EDUCATION POLICY REPORTS

The Cost of Admission: Higher Education in Kansas
After years of declining state investment in higher education due to failed tax policy, Kansas college students incur higher debt and reduced economic prospects. In the past, college was the ticket to a bright future. Each year of education after high school increases earning potential and opens the door to more stable, rewarding careers. Furthermore, education beyond high school increases opportunity and cultivates a skilled workforce vital to a thriving Kansas economy, making the state more attractive to businesses and families.

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Kansas Public Education: The Foundation for Economic Growth
Kansans have long recognized that education is key to economic growth. In 1874, the Territorial Legislature took the first steps to increase school attendance by passing a compulsory school attendance law. The rationale: “education was key to the state’s growth and development, since a literate and skilled citizenry could help build business and industry. Over 150 years later, the link between education, workforce, and economic growth endures. Then as now, investment in public education directly correlates to Kansas’ stake in the national and global economy.

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Quality at Risk: Impact of Education Cuts
Kansas’ public schools are struggling with crowded classrooms, fewer teachers and other challenges after seeing their state funding cut repeatedly since the recession in 2009 — with no relief in sight because of ongoing, scheduled tax cuts. Educators are being asked to do more with less, challenging their ability to provide a quality education to Kansas kids. This threatens the state’s economic future, because a well-educated, highly skilled workforce is increasingly important to attracting jobs that pay well and create widespread prosperity.


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Kansas Schools Struggle With Recent Budget Cuts
Kansas school districts are facing major challenges in the wake of deep cuts in state funding for K-12 education. With debate heating up over a state Supreme Court ruling that the Legislature is failing to adequately fund schools and further income tax cuts threatening to take another major bite out of state resources, it’s a good time to take a look at where school districts get their money, how they spend it and how recent funding cuts have harmed Kansas’ students and the state’s economy.


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Kansas Staring Up from a Deep Education Funding Hole
As Kansas prepares its budget for the coming year, the state is working its way out of a deep education funding hole. Failure to restore the severe cuts the state has made in the wake of the recession would have serious consequences for students’ and the state’s economic future.


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Governor’s Budget Proposal Would Dig Kansas’ Education Funding Hole Even Deeper
Gov. Sam Brownback’s budget proposal would dig Kansas’ already substantial education funding hole even deeper, pushing education funding even further below the pre-recession levels of five years ago. This is a major step in the wrong direction. Cutting education funding makes it harder for Kansas schools to pursue much needed education reform and thus harder for the state to cultivate the highly educated workforce it will need to succeed in today’s global economy.


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