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Brownback: It’s time to consider a new school funding system

Associated Press - August 24, 2016 12:19 pm

A top Democratic lawmaker says he is joining the crowded race to replace Republican Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback. House Minority Leader Jim Ward of Wichita announced his candidacy Saturday. He had named former Democratic Party chairman Lee Kinch as his campaign treasurer earlier this week.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback wants to hear what the public thinks about how schools are funded.

Brownback told WIBW-AM that the old system had “a lot of problems,” and it’s time to talk about a new one. He said Tuesday that his office plans to announce a system for collecting public feedback in the next couple of weeks. He says people should also discuss the issue with Legislative candidates.

Last year, the state’s per-pupil funding formula was junked in favor of predictable grants to districts that allowed lawmakers to better control state spending. The plan is to replace the grants with a new funding system.

An ongoing legal fight clouds the discussions. The state Supreme Court could rule by the year’s end on whether lawmakers are underfunding schools.