Shawnee Mission School Board candidates on the issues: Should the district have intervened in Gannon case?

Shawnee Mission Superintendent Jim Hinson asked his board to consider whether it was appropriate to file a motion to intervene in the Gannon case.
Shawnee Mission Superintendent Jim Hinson asked his board to consider whether it was appropriate to file a motion to intervene in the Gannon case.

Today we continue with responses to the questionnaire we developed with reader input for the candidates running for Shawnee Mission School Board. Today’s item is:

The school district recently filed a motion to intervene in the lawsuit that challenges the level of education funding provided by the state, suggesting that the interests of Shawnee Mission aren’t represented by the smaller districts that filed the initial suit. Do you agree with the intervention and the approach the district is taking in the motion?

At-Large Seat Candidates

Brad_Strattpn-2015Brad Stratton

As an elected member of the Shawnee Mission School District Board of Education, our first priority is to represent the interests of the patrons, parents and students of the District. A secondary interest is to advocate for the public education priorities of all students in the state of Kansas. With the rapid changes taking place in our state legislature around the funding of K-12 education, our primary responsibility is to advocate and protect our interests in high quality public education in the SMSD. I agree with the decision to intervene in the pending lawsuit as a step in assuring that SMSD has a “seat at the table” when it comes to representing the public education interests of the SMSD. The lawsuit brought forth the fact that the state legislature has not been adequately funding public education in Kansas. By intervening in the lawsuit, I see the SMSD as siding with the three judge panel of Shawnee County that stated the legislature continues fall short of their legal responsibility to adequately fund public education in the state.

Libby_rulo-2015Libby Rulo

Yes I agree with the intervention that the district has taken. The Shawnee Mission district seems to be a target of the state and other districts in the state. We need to do whatever is necessary to ensure that the State funding is sufficient to meet the needs of our district.



SM North Area Seat Candidates

sara_goodburn_2015Sara Goodburn (incumbent)

Yes, as a sitting board member, I voted for this motion to intervene in the Gannon lawsuit. Especially now, with recent events in the legislature surrounding a change to the way that the state funds K-12 education, I believe it is important to have a seat at the table so that the district may be a part of the discussion.

Mark Ellis

Did not respond

Tomorrow the candidates respond to our third questionnaire item:

The district has undergone significant changes in the last 18 months including a massive technology rollout, security upgrades, a large bond issue and a significant number of retirements and administrative changes. Are these changes in line with solving the most critical issues facing the district and do you support each of them?