The Class of 2022 never attended school while the legislature was constitutionally funding public education. Academic achievement is a priority, and we are finally getting back on track.
I know the importance of a quality public education, and I value teachers and school staff. I volunteer in the classroom and on the Rising Star PTA executive board. Teachers should have access to training, the right to due process, and the state must have high standards for licensing and hiring teachers. Schools should have the capacity to hire student support services staff and prioritize the needs of our most vulnerable students. We have to make sure that our policies help schools attract and retain excellent teachers and staff.
That’s why I serve on the House K-12 Education Budget Committee and stand up against efforts to dismantle public education.
Kansas students have the right to an adequately funded education – but Kansas parents don’t want a basic education for our kids. We want the best.
The Kansas Supreme Court found the 2019 school funding formula to be adequate, and the court will make sure that the legislature fully funds schools through 2023. We have kept this commitment, but we still have work to do. Republican leadership put a full stop to increased funding for special education and allowed the K-12 budget to skip the Appropriations process so that they could bundle controversial policy with the biggest funding portion of our state budget. We need to bring professionalism and transparency back to the budgeting process and ensure that school funding reflects the changes in educational costs. All Kansas students deserve access to an excellent education.
Funding cuts over the years have led to larger class sizes, program cuts, and a greater difficulty in teachers being able to meet the needs of their students. We have reached a fork in the long road to recovery, and it’s essential to send public school advocates to Topeka or risk losing what we’ve gained. I understand the need to continue to invest in education.