Kansas House votes down school funding compromise, debate drags on
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas House has voted down a school funding compromise that would’ve taken away tenure rights for public school teachers and lowered property taxes for parents who send their students to private schools.
The 67-55 vote against the measure early Sunday morning sent negotiators scrambling to come up with a new proposal aimed at satisfying a state Supreme Court order.
Senate and House negotiators reached the deal earlier in the day that would’ve increased spending by more than $129 million to meet the court order, but it was also included several policy changes
Questions about the constitutionality and cost of the school choice provision caused House members to balk at the overall plan.
Hundreds of teachers attending a state convention packed the Statehouse to watch the debate.
Negotiators met briefly early Sunday to revise the plan the House defeated. The new agreement retained a provision that would strip teachers of their tenure rights, but jettisoned creating tax breaks for parents who send their children to private schools. Senators will take first crack at the new plan, with debate expected around dawn.
Legislators are trying to find a solution to resolve equity issues identified by the Supreme Court that hurt poor school districts.