Kansas must spend more on schools to comply with law, judges rule

The Lawrence-Journal World reports that a three-judge panel in Shawnee County today has issued a ruling requiring the state to raise the amount of base aid provided for public school students. The ruling deems the state’s current funding level for public schools unconstitutional.

From the LJW story:

The Kansas Legislature has violated its constitutional duty to provide suitable funding for public schools, a three-judge panel ruled today.

In a 326-page opinion, a three-judge panel that presided over the case effectively ordered the Legislature to fund public schools at $4,492 per-pupil.

The state’s current base aid per pupil funding level is $3,838. Here’s the full story.

UPDATED 3:37 p.m. Friday:

Here’s the Shawnee Mission School District’s response to the ruling:

School funding has been an overriding concern for the Shawnee Mission School District for many years. While the Shawnee Mission School District was not a party to this lawsuit and we have not had an opportunity to carefully review this court decision, it appears the judges’ ruling supports increased funding for schools. Since 2009, the Shawnee Mission School District has incurred an approximate $550 per student reduction in funding from the state. This reduction equates to more than $18 million in state revenue. As a result, our school district has had to adjust programs, make significant workforce reductions, and increase allowable fees. District officials will be reviewing the court’s ruling to determine potential impact, and we are aware that the decision will likely be appealed. Any final determination may not be known until an appeal is heard.