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Schools and education

Field of candidates for Lawrence City Commission, school board elections set
05:46 p.m., January 27, 2015 Updated 10:31 p.m.
At the Tuesday filing deadline, 14 candidates had signed up for three at-large seats on the City Commission, and four candidates will contend for a two-year term on the school board and seven other candidates will compete for four four-year terms on the board. The 14 candidates for the City Commission is the largest field in at least a decade, according to records from the Douglas County clerk’s office.
Senate bill would repeal Common Core standards
04:38 p.m., January 27, 2015 Updated 10:31 p.m.
A Senate bill would repeal many of the new academic standards adopted by the Kansas State Board of Education and would make future standards merely advisory for local school districts. By Peter Hancock
Lawrence voters overwhelmingly approve keeping local option budget at 33 percent
03:47 p.m., January 27, 2015 Updated 10:33 p.m.
Lawrence voters overwhelmingly approved the Lawrence school district keeping its local option budget at 33 percent. Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew said Tuesday that 84 percent of registered voters in the school district voted yes, and 16 percent voted no. Nearly 17,300 ballots were cast in the county’s first ever mail-ballot election, an almost 33 percent turnout, which Shew described as “excellent.” By Elliot Hughes
Local Communities in Schools chapter receives recognition for work at Kennedy Elementary
02:50 p.m., January 27, 2015 Updated 10:55 p.m.
A local chapter of the Communities in Schools network has been given an Unsung Heroes Award for its work at Kennedy Elementary School.
Lawrence school board, Boys and Girls Club team up on teen center idea
January 26, 2015
The Lawrence school district is officially on board with a proposal that would place a new teen center for the Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence next to the district’s upcoming College and Career Center.
Lawrence high schools to offer KU courses in English, algebra
09:21 p.m., January 26, 2015 Updated 10:25 p.m.
The Lawrence school board on Wednesday approved a partnership with KU that will allow Lawrence faculty to teach KU’s English 101 and Algebra 101 at Lawrence High School and Free State High School.
Fincher, Spears file for school board; primary election coming for one seat
05:13 p.m., January 26, 2015 Updated 10:27 p.m.
After two more candidates filed for the Lawrence school board election Monday, a primary election will now be held for the lone two-year term that’s up for grabs.
Perry-Lecompton High principal stepping down
04:56 p.m., January 26, 2015 Updated 10:21 p.m.
J.B. Elliott is stepping down from his position as the principal of Perry-Lecompton High School to become the district’s curriculum director, according to Superintendent Denis Yoder.
Boys & Girls Club looking at building teen center near Lawrence schools’ College and Career Center
10:07 p.m., January 24, 2015 Updated 10:29 p.m.
The Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence is exploring the possibility of building a new teen center on the property that will house the Lawrence school district’s College and Career Center.
Lawrence schools might offer KU courses in math, English
January 24, 2015
At its Monday meeting, the Lawrence school board will be asked to approve of a partnership that would allow students to take Kansas University classes at Lawrence High and Free State High.
Beeson files for Lawrence school board
06:21 p.m., January 23, 2015 Updated 10:26 p.m.
Jessica Beeson, the director of alumni and community engagement for Kansas University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has emerged as another candidate in the April 7 election for the Lawrence school board.
Kansas attorney general asks court to clarify school finance ruling
January 23, 2015
Attorney General Derek Schmidt says the three-judge panel handling the school finance lawsuit didn’t explain what facts it relied on in its ruling that said current funding for schools is unconstitutional. He is asking the panel to revise its Dec. 30 opinion, which will delay any review by the Kansas Supreme Court. By Peter Hancock
School funding plan’s effects on property taxes uncertain
03:44 p.m., January 23, 2015 Updated 10:26 p.m.
Kansas legislators from both parties say they’re not sure how Republican Gov. Sam Brownback’s school-funding proposals would affect the power that local districts have to raise local property taxes.
Lawrence School District continues to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.
09:25 p.m., January 22, 2015 Updated 10:17 p.m.
The Martin Luther King Community Choir sang praises to their namesake Thursday night in the auditorium of Lawrence High School. As they sang the audience began to clap and chime in. “Equality and unity. This is what I think of when I think of the king,” the choir sang. “Freedom and liberty, is the legacy of Martin Luther King.”
Loveland, Spurgeon file for Lawrence school board two-year seat
January 22, 2015
Kelly Spurgeon, a program consultant at the Kansas State Department of Education, and Mary Loveland, a former board member of 20 years, both filed for the lone two-year term that is up for grabs in the April 7 election.
Brownback budget cuts K-12 education, holds higher education funding flat
05:29 p.m., January 16, 2015 Updated 10:42 p.m.
Higher education officials feel relieved that Gov. Sam Brownback’s budget proposal does not call for cutting any of their funding. But K-12 schools would lose more than $100 million through a sweeping change in the funding system that threatens to complicate the ongoing school finance lawsuit. By Peter Hancock
School efficiency panel suggests forming 2 new committees
January 14, 2015
Kansas lawmakers have agreed to consider two bills that would create new commissions to find ways to operate schools — as proposed by a task force appointed to identify efficient ways to spend school funds.
Group embarks on project to make schools more accessible by foot, bicycle
08:15 p.m., January 14, 2015 Updated 10:12 p.m.
More than 60 percent of elementary and middle school parents in Lawrence believe their child’s school does nothing to encourage students to walk or bike to class, health officials said Wednesday.
Kansas education board elects new leadership
05:33 p.m., January 13, 2015 Updated 10:07 p.m.
The Kansas State Board of Education chose Wichita Republican Jim McNiece as its new chairman and Topeka Democrat Corolyn Campbell as vice-chair for the coming year. They will be in charge of steering the board through a tumultuous year that will include battles in the Legislature over school funding and the transition to a new system of accrediting schools. By Peter Hancock
Douglas County’s first mail-ballot election sees high voter turnout
04:05 p.m., January 13, 2015 Updated 10:02 p.m.
Early returns for Douglas County’s first mail-ballot election show a higher-than-expected voter turnout, officials said.
Lawrence student one of two Kansans chosen for national Senate Youth Program
January 13, 2015
Stefan Petrovic, a junior at Lawrence High School, has been selected to participate in the 53rd annual United States Senate Youth Program in Washington, D.C.
Lawrence school board election: Three more declare candidacy
01:08 p.m., January 13, 2015 Updated 10:05 p.m.
Three more candidates have filed to run in the April 7 election for the Lawrence school board, bringing the total to six.
Plenty of Lawrence students want to bike, walk to school, study says
January 12, 2015
About 15 percent of K-8 students in Lawrence public and private schools walk or bike between home and school, which is practically identical to the nationwide rate. But there is a sizable demand among students to do more of it, area health officials said Monday.
Lawmakers convene amid budget crisis, school finance suit
04:40 p.m., January 12, 2015 Updated 10:10 p.m.
Kansas lawmakers began the 2015 session Monday facing a mounting budget deficit and a school finance lawsuit that could make the budget problems even worse. But legislative leaders appeared generally optimistic on the first day of what is scheduled to be a 90-day session. By Peter Hancock
Editorial: The other race
The Lawrence school board also is in need of strong, qualified candidates.
January 12, 2015
The Lawrence City Commission election is drawing more than the usual amount of interest this year, but the Lawrence school board race has gotten little attention — and that’s too bad.
Near completion, new system for instructing students with cognitive disabilities to ‘radically change education’
January 11, 2015
A project funded by one of the largest research grants in Kansas University history that aims to change education for students with severe cognitive disabilities is nearing completion. By Elliot Hughes
Kansas lawmakers open session amid budget shortfalls
January 11, 2015
Kansas legislators open a critical annual session Monday that will require them to wade through massive budget shortfalls and deal with a court mandate to boost spending on public schools.
Kimball, Ingram, Frye file for Lawrence school board
05:04 p.m., January 9, 2015 Updated 09:55 p.m.
Two incumbents and one would-be newcomer have filed for one of the five Lawrence school board seats to be filled in the April 7 election.
South Middle School teacher wins statewide Horizon Award
January 9, 2015
The Kansas State Department of Education on Friday awarded Laura Hochman, an English language arts teacher at South Middle School, with the Horizon Award, which recognizes exceptional first-year educators.
Lawsuit filed after Kansas public schools receive fake bills for textbooks
02:27 p.m., January 8, 2015 Updated 10:37 p.m.
Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt filed a lawsuit against a New Jersey-based company that sent false invoices for textbooks that were never purchased to over 300 Kansas public schools, including those in Lawrence.