WRITER: Conner Mitchell

Voter registration efforts ramp up at KU as Oct. 13 deadline nears; Lied Center to serve as voting site

Just over three weeks before the general election, efforts to register as many voters as possible in Douglas County have been ongoing leading up to Kansas' voter registration deadline Tuesday — specifically among a group that while eligible to do so, traditionally doesn’t vote at a high rate: college students. The University of Kansas adds thousands of eligible voters to the county’s voting population ...

Higher education organizations, including some where KU is a member, condemn recent Trump order on 'divisive concepts'

An executive order issued by President Donald Trump near the end of September that seeks to end "divisive concepts" and stereotyping based on race and sex in all federally funded programs has caused a stir in recent days among higher education institutions. The broadly written Sept. 22 "Executive Order on Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping" states that federal programs that through training or educational ...

2020 Voters Guide: Bollier, Marshall have differing opinions on 'Kansas values' as state prepares for consequential U.S. Senate race

As Kansas prepares for its most consequential and closest Senate race in a generation — one that could elect a Democrat to the seat for the first time since 1932 — two medical doctors, Democrat Barbara Bollier and Republican Roger Marshall, are both running campaigns focused on what they call “Kansas values.” That’s where the similarities end. Bollier and Marshall are opposed on essentially every ...

2020 Voters Guide: Topeka mayor, Kansas state treasurer vying for U.S. House seat in 2nd Congressional District

Topeka mayor Michelle De La Isla and Kansas Treasurer Jake LaTurner will be facing off this year in Kansas’ 2nd Congressional District — a seat that was decided by less than 1% of the vote in the 2018 midterms. De La Isla, a Democrat, and LaTurner, a Republican, are vying for the U.S. House seat currently held by Republican Rep. Steve Watkins. Watkins, whom LaTurner unseated in the Republican primary in ...

2020 Voters Guide: Democrat incumbent Holland to face Republican challenger Dove in 3rd District Kansas Senate race

One of the only contested races in the Douglas County area for the Kansas Legislature will pit longtime incumbent Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, against current Rep. Willie Dove, R-Bonner Springs, for the state’s 3rd District Senate seat. Holland, a moderate Democrat who lost a 2010 bid to become the state’s governor, said that 2020 has been one of the most interesting election cycles he has been a part of, ...

22 more cases of COVID-19 confirmed at KU; drive-thru test clinic for symptomatic patients sees uptick in use

The University of Kansas has confirmed an additional 22 cases of COVID-19 since it last released data Tuesday afternoon. Kansas' flagship university has now confirmed 1,031 total cases of the respiratory virus since its mass entry testing program began in early August. That program gave way to a more targeted strategy of testing those with COVID-19 symptoms, close contacts of confirmed positive cases and ...

KDHE names no outbreaks of COVID-19 in Douglas County as statewide virus count nears 64,000

Just one week after the Kansas Department of Health and Education identified outbreaks of COVID-19 at two Douglas County high schools, the county on Wednesday had no cluster locations in the department's weekly update. KDHE releases the location of COVID-19 outbreaks that result in five or more confirmed cases over the previous 14 days, and last week listed Baldwin City High School, with five cases, and ...

KU confirms 9 additional cases of COVID-19 over the weekend; number of students in isolation jumps to 29

The University of Kansas on Tuesday confirmed nine new cases of COVID-19 on its campus since its last update on Friday and saw a significant jump in the number of students in isolation because of the virus. Over the most recent seven-day period for which data is available — Sept. 28 through Oct. 4 — KU confirmed a total of 41 new cases. However, that data overlaps somewhat with the report that was released ...

Kansas to receive 870,000 rapid-response COVID-19 tests from federal government, Kelly announces

The state of Kansas will receive 870,000 rapid detection tests for COVID-19 from the federal government over the next three months — "significant, much-needed resources" in the state's efforts to manage the spread of the respiratory virus, Gov. Laura Kelly announced Monday. The first 57,000 tests from the allotment given to Kansas from a pool of 150 million tests have already arrived, Kelly said. President ...

KU's cumulative COVID-19 case total hits 1,000 as various metrics inch upward; 29 new cases reported since Tuesday

The University of Kansas' cumulative COVID-19 case total rose to exactly 1,000 on Friday as the university reported 29 new cases of the respiratory virus. Since it last released data on Tuesday, KU also saw slight increases in nearly every metric the university publicly tracks. From Sept. 24 to Sept. 30, the most recent seven-day period for which data is available, KU received results from 943 COVID-19 ...

Overall enrollment at KU falls 2.7% due to COVID-19 pandemic, declines in international and freshman enrollment

After months of speculation both inside and outside of higher education that the COVID-19 pandemic would decimate college and university enrollment figures, the University of Kansas seemed to emerge relatively unscathed in its fall semester enrollment. Overall, KU's enrollment fell by less than 3 percent, and the university achieved high marks for its one-year retention rate for 2019 freshmen — 85.7%, the ...

KDHE identifies two COVID-19 outbreaks at Douglas County high schools; statewide case count nears 60,000

In its weekly update on the locations of certain outbreaks of COVID-19, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment on Wednesday identified two Douglas County-area high schools that have confirmed five or more cases of the respiratory virus in the last 14 days. Five cases were confirmed at Baldwin High School in Baldwin City, and seven cases were confirmed on the volleyball team at Bishop Seabury Academy ...

Richard Schiefelbusch, leader in speech pathology and disability research, dies at 102

Richard Schiefelbusch, one of the foremost authorities on speech language pathology and intellectual and developmental disabilities who spent over four decades as a professor and institute director at the University of Kansas, died last week at the age of 102. Schiefelbusch, a Kansas native, served as a navigator aboard B-24 bombers in World War II before being captured for two years as a prisoner of war. ...

21 more COVID-19 cases confirmed at KU; percentage of symptomatic patients testing positive again falls

The University of Kansas has confirmed another 21 cases of COVID-19 since it last released data on Friday, and the cumulative case total at Kansas' flagship university now sits at 971. A total of 954 tests conducted from Sept. 21 to Sept. 27 revealed 31 positive cases, though 10 of those were also included in Friday's data update, which covered testing from Sept. 17 to Sept. 23. Also, the percentage of ...

John Hadl, legendary KU football player and university advocate, given lifetime achievement award by KU Alumni Association

John Hadl, one of only three players in the history of football at the University of Kansas to have his number retired and a decades-long leader in Kansas Athletics' Williams Education Fund, has received the highest honor bestowed by the KU Alumni Association. The Fred Ellsworth Medallion, which has existed since 1975, is the association's highest honor for distinguished service to KU. It's named in tribute to ...

Kelly announces unified testing strategy to bolster Kansas' COVID-19 response as state sets record for new cases

On the same day that Kansas hit a new high for new COVID-19 cases in a single data reporting period, Gov. Laura Kelly announced a strategy to rapidly increase the state's ability to test both symptomatic and asymptomatic people for the respiratory disease. The strategy, Kelly said, is an attempt to generate a more comprehensive statewide approach to slowing the spread of COVID-19. In past weeks, she has ...

COVID-19 pandemic upends Monarch Watch programming, but annual butterfly migration continuing mostly as normal

A local effort to tag and track monarch butterflies on their migration to Mexico hasn't been able to hold its usual public events because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the insects' annual journey is continuing mostly as normal, the project's director says. Monarch Watch, a program housed on the west campus of the University of Kansas, has for years sought to educate the public on the declining population of ...

KU confirms 12 new COVID-19 cases; percentage of symptomatic patients testing positive falls

The University of Kansas' cumulative COVID-19 case total has risen by 12 since the university last released data on Tuesday — by far the lowest uptick since the university began regularly sharing data. KU has now confirmed 950 cases of the respiratory virus since its mass entry testing program began in early August, the school announced Friday afternoon. In COVID-19 testing conducted between Sept. 17 and ...

KU launches child care assistance fund for employees, graduate student workers to assist with extra pandemic costs

The University of Kansas will use federal funds from the CARES Act stimulus package — allocated by Gov. Laura Kelly's SPARK Taskforce — to establish a child care assistance fund for employees facing unexpected costs due to their children's school being moved again to online or hybrid learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Exactly how much funding will be available wasn't entirely clear Thursday, but any ...

KDHE tightens virus outbreak list to include only cases active in last 14 days; no clusters named in Douglas County

Updated at 5:18 The Kansas Department of Health and Environment on Wednesday revamped its practices for releasing the locations of active COVID-19 outbreaks across the state, narrowing the time frame required for active cases in an attempt to reduce confusion. The change, which came a week after the department suspended updates in order to review feedback, significantly reduced the number of named outbreaks. ...