Kansas House Democrats fundraise off school funding lies

An email sent on March 27 by Kansas House Democrats under the signature of Rep. Valdenia Winn (D-Kansas City) contains multiple lies about school funding and uses those falsehoods to solicit donations to “elect more Democrats.”

Kansas House Democrats falsely claim that the House K-12 budget “chopped” special education funding and that “public school budgets were cut.”  Both are deliberate and conscious lies, as demonstrated by the Kansas Legislative Research Department table below.

House Substitute for SB 387 increases special education funding next year by $82 million, going from $528 million to $610 million.

Total state funding was $5.487 billion in FY 2023; it increases to $5.584 billion this year and to $5.875 billion next year.

Base state aid per student also increases next year.  The small decline in state foundation aid this year of about $13 million is caused by enrollment declines; state foundation aid is determined by multiplying the number of weighted full-time equivalent students times base state aid per student, so the enrollment decline offset the increase in base state aid.

Federal funding drops off in FY 2025 because temporary pandemic relief money is going away, but the Legislature has no control over that.

Politicians sometimes say funding is cut if they don’t get as much as they want.  For example, if they wanted a $10 million increase but only got $9 million more, they might try to spin that as a $1 million cut.  But funding still increased.

Rep. Winn serves on the House K-12 Education Budget Committee and is especially aware of these facts.  She and the Kansas House Democrats should issue an apology and correction to their followers, as well as to fellow legislators who were falsely accused of cutting school funding.

Dave Trabert – Kansas Policy Institute

Dave Trabert is Chief Executive Officer of Kansas Policy Institute, where he also does research and writes on fiscal policy and education issues. He is the lead author of two books: Giving Kids a Fighting Chance with School Choice and What was Really the Matter with the Kansas Tax Plan, and his other published work includes “A Five-Year Budget Plan for the State of Kansas,” “Student-Focused Funding Solutions for Public Education,” and “Removing Barriers to Better Public Education.” He also writes for The Sentinel, which is owned by KPI.

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George Pisani

I don’t know whether or not State aid goes in-part towards administrative salaries, but if so then USD-497 certainly skims quite a bit.
And of course, TAX dollars underwrite a lot. Actually, since ALL government funding is tax derived, … well. Per the old saying “no matter how you cut it, it’s still baloney.”

Small wonder kids are disappearing from public school enrollments.

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