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Do you agree with a Kansas court’s ruling that the Legislature is not suitably funding schools?

Response Percent Votes
73% 662
22% 204
Not sure
3% 36
Total 902


bearded_gnome 5 years, 5 months ago

the courts are not the legislature, do not have the constitutional duty to tax or to appropriate monies.
so, my answer is no.

plus, more money does not, certainly does not, mean better schools.

one need only briefly study the sad example of the KCMO schools which isn't even an accredited district, and so much money is spent per pupil!

funkdog1 5 years, 5 months ago

The elementary school our child attends here in town is physically falling apart. It is also physically too small to adequately serve all the kids going there. I have a feeling that you don't have a child in school right now and haven't actually stepped inside one, at least for quite some time.

Liberty275 5 years, 5 months ago

We vote in an older elementary school and it's nicer than the ones we had a few decades ago.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

oh, and I know you had to trudge 10 miles in the snow uphill both ways to get there too. God forbid we should want something better for the young'uns.

Bigdog66046 5 years, 5 months ago

It's to bad that the current school board has chosen to close several elementary school, some in good physical condition, just to push "their" idea of what they want the school buildings to be like, with NO concern for the actual students in the district! They are trying to force this by their actions of closing schools, renting schools for no $, spending millions on sports fields instead of maintaining the building we have.

Alyosha 5 years, 5 months ago

Do a lack of materials and supplies, and a too-high student-to-teach ratio, lead to quality education?

Bailey Perkins 5 years, 5 months ago

more money does not, certainly does not, mean better schools

Have you ever compared Kansas education standards to other states, especially Texas? In Dallas alone, schools are paid for via property tax and this has proven to have an outstanding success rate.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

unless property tax is spread around to ALL the school districts,the result of that kind of funding alone means defacto lousy funding for poor tax-base districts and great funding for high property tax-base west Lawrence schools would be rolling in $$$$ and east side schools would be falling apart ...and both of them would be better than inner city KCKS or sparsely populated western KS. so property tax alone can't be the sole funding base....that's where the State legislature steps in to attempt equalize funding....or not.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

this was a response to gnome's assertions about $$$ not equaling quality and grinching about the unconstitutionality of the Court's ruling

weeslicket 5 years, 5 months ago

the supreme court of kansas does have a constitutional duty, and they just performed it. again. now we wait on the legislature, and the governor, to abide by the kansas contitution. for those of us counting, that would be 3 co-equal branches of government.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

no, but the Courts are the third leg of the governing tripod of executive, legislative and judicial, the American system of checks and balances, constitutionally based fr the jump.That's why the Gov and the leisalture..and apparently you...are so gung-ho to change how the occupants of the courts are chosen, so the Gov has a bigger, if not determining role. And no, $$$ isn't the ONLY determinant of educational quality, but funding for materials, decent classrooms and well-qualified and SUFFICIENT staff (teachers plus counselors, janitors, etc) are quite significant.

chootspa 5 years, 5 months ago

A pile of money does not teach by itself, true. But just try to run schools without any money at all. Money is a component in adequate education, but not the only factor.

I'll tell you what doesn't mean better schools, though: voucher programs. And generally, the whole "money doesn't matter" argument is followed by "so let's give that money to private entities instead." There's no evidence that such action improves education and quite a bit of evidence that it doesn't.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 5 years, 5 months ago

The current system is broke, yes there are some success stories, but overall there needs to be a total reorganization. This does not mean keep throwing money at it in hopes it will fix what is wrong.

Our educational system, just like most of the other governmental controlled system, has let the beast get larger than the cage. The accounting tricks and administration tend to be favor keeping their jobs all under the umbrella of "Helping" the kids.

There needs go be a full audit of the asset allocation so we can see just where the tax dollars go and in what amounts. My guess is that under the "Use or lose" format, tax dollars exhist where they are supposed to until the end of the year, then can be re-allocated to whatever the dominate male desires, burnt up or squandered bringing the account close to zero so funding for the ensuing year can be requested and justified.

Giving these "Stewards" of our tax dollars the $92.5 million bond issue blindly is absurd.

No one wants a poor educational system, but I am sure we all want a system that provides the tax payer value for monies spent. This one size fits all solution given us by the courts, IMHO, just keeps throwing good money after bad and keeps the under informed voter happy till the cycle repeats itself.

verity 5 years, 5 months ago

Apparently it's colder than I thought because hell just froze over :-)

I agree with Can't that a full audit of asset allocation should be done and the "use or lose it" format should be changed in all government systems. My own experience has been that there is a lot of waste at the end of the fiscal year and probably a number of unwise spending decisions made under pressure. It encourages a mindset that doesn't promote efficiency.

chootspa 5 years, 5 months ago

Lawrence attempted to give themselves some buffer room but were told to spend down their reserves. Hence all the bonuses and spending they've done recently.

Water 5 years, 5 months ago

The "Use it or lose it" format does result in absurd purchases by both males and females. Since these are tax dollars spent by public entities, it seems the information would be readily available to a journalist. Hint, hint. Could be the kind of story that leads to a budget deficit reduction. Stoke, fan, stoke, fan.

verity 5 years, 5 months ago

Since the spending is so widely dispersed and not under any particular heading, it would be difficult, if not impossible, to track. It may not even be a very significant part of the budget, but it does encourage waste.

I would propose that the whole budgeting system be changed, but I have no idea how. I would like to know if anybody else has ideas that might actually work.

Not that this is going to ever save enough money to make up for current shortfalls and with the current mindset, it would just be passed along in cutting taxes for the Kochs.

kernal 5 years, 5 months ago

If schools were suitably funded, then my friends who teach wouldn't be paying out of pocket for students needs. And, that's not just in Kansas.

Liberty275 5 years, 5 months ago

"then my friends who teach wouldn't be paying out of pocket for students needs"

Shouldn't the parents be paying for their kids out of pocket needs?

George_Braziller 5 years, 5 months ago

Teachers for decades have been paying for some of their student's needs out of their own pockets. My grandmother was an elementary teacher for more than 30 years and even 40 years ago when she retired she was doing it.

She loved teaching and felt a personal responsibility to ensure that all of her students had what was needed for her class. Some parents didn't or couldn't provide the supplies for the entire school year so she made sure they had them.

Liberty275 5 years, 5 months ago

40 years ago kids weren't doing their school work on computers.

George_Braziller 5 years, 5 months ago

And your point is what? Not all school work is done on computers.

Alyosha 5 years, 5 months ago

Careful there: paying out of pocket for students' needs does NOT equal paying for kids out of pocket needs.

Teachers routinely pay for materials for their teaching support materials out of their own pockets, to make up for the lack of funding by the legislature.

George_Braziller 5 years, 5 months ago

She was supplying basics like pencils and paper for class projects for kids who didn't have them. She also knitted stocking caps for some of them because it gets cold in Wyoming during the winter and some came to school without coats.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 5 years, 5 months ago

Guess you have never been a scout leader. They too, wind up paying a lot out of pocket for children who's parents either don't think far enough ahead to get them what they need or just choose not to.

Alyosha 5 years, 5 months ago

Scouts programs are not a mandated responsibility of the state government.

Public education is a mandated responsibility of the state government.

Apples and oranges, in other words.

elliottaw 5 years, 5 months ago

or paying these ridiculous registration fees, what is that trash about, Kansas is all screwed up

Richard Heckler 5 years, 5 months ago

This money that should be spent. There is nothing necessarily wrong with public education. Simply because the repub party has been painting public education as evil so they can blow tax $$$$$ on privatization does not make public education a bad investment. Public education is a best bang for the buck. Privatization will neither cost tax payers less nor will it improve a situation that is not broken.

Republicans are not smart business people. They believe that defunding a taxpayer public service makes it operate more efficiently. They believe that people should make less money for the hard work they contribute to the system. Yet they are perfectly willing to throw tons and tons of tax dollars at wealthy for profit industries instead of telling them to go away...... then again wealthy corporations fund their political campaigns.

John Hamm 5 years, 5 months ago

No, Merrill, we believe in non-wasteful spending. There's far too many administrators in Larryville schools as well as wasteful expenses. It's time people, including Liberals, learned to live a less high on the hog.

tomatogrower 5 years, 5 months ago

So private jets, private elevators and obscene bonuses are not wasteful spending? Oh yeah, businesses never have wasteful spending. That's why they don't want to provide insurance and other benefits to the people who do the real work.

Patricia Davis 5 years, 5 months ago

Sadly, because Kansans have elected these idiots, they deserve the government these idiots impose upon them. All Kansans who believe in quality education for their children and who voted republican deserve this hell.

verity 5 years, 5 months ago

I would argue that nobody deserves this. The question is: What are we going to do about it? Brownback and minions are now trying to change the method of appointing judges so they can control that also and then their school funding problem will go away.

And when the pendulum swings back, which it usually does, a politicized court will not be in their favor. But they believe they are God and that will never happen.

Sue Grosdidier 5 years, 5 months ago

As an Educator, I can tell you we do not just educate today. Kids come with so much baggage that we end up providing clothing, supplies, extra food, moral support, counseling, transportation and the list goes on. My husband has given me a budget to work with because I am always spending my own money on the kids. I have been doing this a long time and let me tell you, it is different and harder today to work with the monetary resources or lack there of that we have.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

bless you...and yr husband... for the endless and most important work you do.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 5 years, 5 months ago

Spending your money on those in your class is a personal choice. The term "Ownership by action" comes into play as when you chose to do this, then down the line it is becomes expected of you. There is no reason to complain about it as it was your choice.

Many in the private sector also have to invest in their jobs. Mechanics for example, many have a few thousand dollars in tools and basically work as contractors to the guy who pays the advertising and the lease. Teachers too, should become contractors to the school system. We could then have a performance based system where retention of said teachers could be reviewed every year and adjustments could be made in favor of those paying the bills. The taxpayer.

deec 5 years, 5 months ago

Mechanics don't generally buy the parts for their customers to install on their cars. Customers must pay for them. Teachers often buy the consumable supplies like paper used by the students.

hedshrinker 5 years, 5 months ago

Several people have proposed audits of school expenditures as to need and efficacy...not a terrible idea in itself....I hope they include in the audit all the teachers and staff who spend PILES of $$$$$ to buy supplies, food, clothing , standard IRS reimbursement for transportation and fair compensation for the gazillions of hours ed staff DONATE yearly to do work with the next generation they love but are never recognized or justly compensated for. Most people would not sign up for a job that demanded so much and rewarded so little and who are daily on the front lines with lots of difficult kids and even more difficult parents and a public that always blames the teachers first...think of the horrible reader comments you've read here...teachers are lazy, greedy, drinking at the public trough, only work a few months of the year, a few hours a's endless the abuse these teachers and staff face, and yet if current news is to be believed are every day de-escalating crises , saving lives and sometimes sacrificing their own.

verity 5 years, 5 months ago

Yes, you are right. It takes a special person to be a teacher and most of us don't have it in us.

speedy47 5 years, 5 months ago

Excellent idea! By all means let's throw them in jail for contempt. I'm all for it.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 5 months ago

Teacher Salary Support
Would you favor a sales tax increase to provide more money for Lawrence teacher salaries? Of 5,198 votes increasing teacher salaries 4,204 votes in favor of increased teacher salaries.

This is against the rules so teachers get left struggling. It does represent the depth of support USD 497 teachers could realize if given the opportunity.

If schools move under the "privatization" umbrella thousands of teachers could find themselves unemployed without notice. Can be documented.

In America major USA corporations are not about good wages instead about the "bottom line", shareholders , golden parachutes and special interest campaign contributions.

Vouchers aka privatization is a vehicle to funnel tax dollars into private schools. This is tax dollar money laundering. Using the false promise of “choice,” privatization is an unabashed abandonment of public education and of our hopes for a vibrant democracy.

verity 5 years, 5 months ago

"Vouchers aka privatization is a vehicle to funnel tax dollars into private schools. This is tax dollar money laundering. Using the false promise of “choice,” privatization is an unabashed abandonment of public education and of our hopes for a vibrant democracy."

And another attempt to trickle up and dumb down the masses.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 5 months ago

The courts, in theory, can shut down the system. Do that just before school starts and the parents will probably rally for the cause. The Gov is in denial and he's in a tough spot on this one.

Tracy Rogers 5 years, 5 months ago

This poll shows an overwhelmingly percentage of people agreeing that our Legislature, OUR ELECTED LEGISLATORS, are not suitably funding schools. Please don't rely on a poll to sway those people we've put in office. CALL your representative, email your representative, text your representative, and tell them to fund our schools!

Armstrong 5 years, 5 months ago

Interesting side note to this whole funding thing. Suppose tax rates skyrocket to the point where schools are " suitably funded " My question is when the schools do get the " suitably funded " why is it the next year they need more money and the year after that and so on. Is there a limit to "suitable funding " ? Who sets the standard ? What are the visible benchmarks for ROI ?

Paul R Getto 5 years, 5 months ago

The suits have been about that very thing, based on standards set by our Legislature back in the 1980's. the numbers from the courts are what is needed based on the Legislators' will.

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