Wichita and Kansas schools

Wichita public schools, by the charts

Wichita public schools, by the charts

Data from the annual report for USD 259, the Wichita, Kansas, public school district. The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for USD 259, the Wichita public school district, provides a look at trends over the years. The document, along with those from previous years, is available here. Here are some highlights from the CAFR for the year ending June 30, 2018, known as fiscal year 2018. (Click charts for larger versions.) The following chart shows data from the CAFR along with my calculations. I took two data series, "total revenue" and "sum of state and local revenue," then divided by FTE…
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Kansas tax credit scholarship program

Kansas tax credit scholarship program

An op-ed in the Wichita Eagle regarding school choice prompts uninformed and misinformed comments. An op-ed written by James Franko appearing in the Wichita Eagle explains the importance of the Kansas Tax Credit for Low Income Students Scholarship Program. This is a program that awards scholarships to students to attend schools of choice. It is a small program. For the school year ending in 2018, 292 students received scholarships totaling $675,892.63. This represents one of every 9,606 dollars spent on Kansas schools. For each group of 1,632 Kansas students, one received a tax credit scholarship. Yet, this program is seen…
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Kansas school salaries

Kansas school salaries

An interactive visualization of Kansas school salaries by district and category. This visualization holds salaries of Kansas school superintendents, principals, and teachers. The visualization shows the average for each of these categories for each school district. The values are adjusted for inflation to the most current year values. Some data is presented on a per-pupil basis using full-time equivalent student counts. The visualization includes both tables and charts. The source of the data is Kansas State Department of Education for salaries and enrollments, United States Bureau of Labor Statistics for price levels, and author's calculations. Click here to access the…
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Kansas school spending, through 2018

Kansas school spending, through 2018

Charts of Kansas school spending presented in different forms. Recently Kansas State Department of Education released spending figures for the 2018 school year, that is, the school year starting in 2017 and ending in 2018. One of the most important charts shows state spending per-pupil, adjusted for inflation. It shows the total of state and local spending, which is useful because in 2015 the state made a change in the way revenue is allocated between state and local sources. It also shows base state aid per pupil, which is an important number as it is the starting point for the…
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WichitaLiberty.TV: Sedgwick County and Wichita issues

WichitaLiberty.TV: Sedgwick County and Wichita issues

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: The end of a Sedgwick County Commission election, the Wichita Eagle editorializes on school spending and more taxes, and Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell seems misinformed on the Wichita economy. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 207, broadcast August 26, 2018. Shownotes The Wichita Eagle reports there will be a recount: Ranzau and Nicks commission race headed to a recount as Ranzau clings to narrow lead. The Wichita Eagle reports on the result of the recount: (cue sound of crickets) Article: Wichita school spending, according to the Wichita Eagle: A recent editorial…
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Wichita school spending, according to the Wichita Eagle

Wichita school spending, according to the Wichita Eagle

A recent editorial by the largest newspaper in Kansas misinforms its readers. "For too many years, the [Wichita public school] district was constrained by reduced state spending on public-school children. School systems across Kansas tightened belts to the point of being unable to breathe." [1. Wichita Eagle Editorial Board. *A well-funded Wichita school district. A sight this city’s children deserve." August 10, 2018. Available at https://www.kansas.com/opinion/editorials/article216418710.html.] So says a recent editorial in the Wichita Eagle, the largest newspaper in Kansas. What does the data tell us? Data from the Kansas State Department of Education for the school year ending in…
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From Pachyderm: Candidates for State Board of Education, District 7

From Pachyderm: Candidates for State Board of Education, District 7

From the Wichita Pachyderm Club: Candidates for State Board of Education, District 7. Republican candidates appearing are Robert M. D’Andrea and Ben Jones. This was recorded on July 20, 2018. Kenneth Willard is the current member for district 7. He is not seeking election. The winner of the August primary election will meet the Democratic party candidate in the November general election. The Kansas State Board of Education has ten districts, each being composed of four Kansas Senate districts. District 7 covers portions of central and east-central Kansas, including these cities: Alma, Emporia, Matfield Green, Marion, McPherson, Ellsworth, Lyons, Hutchinson,…
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Kansas candidate briefings

Kansas candidate briefings

Recently Kansas Policy Institute, along with Americans for Prosperity and Kansas Chamber of Commerce, held a series of briefings for candidates for the Kansas Legislature. The presentations in Wichita were recorded, and are available as follows: What Was Really the Matter with the Kansas Tax Plan. KPI President Dave Trabert spoke on the reality and myths of the state's tax plan. Click here to view at YouTube. Kansas K-12 Education Spending and Achievement. KPI President Dave Trabert spoke on K-12 education spending and achievement. Click here to view. Medicaid Expansion. Melissa Fausz, a senior policy analyst with Americans for Prosperity,…
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Kansas teachers union compliance instructions released

Kansas teachers union compliance instructions released

If you're running for office in Kansas and want the support of the teachers union, here are questions you'll need to answer their way. Kansas National Education Association (KNEA), our state's teachers union has a questionnaire for candidates running for elective office. It's really not a series of questions; instead it is a list of things the union wants. Candidates seeking union backing are expected to comply. Following are a sample of questions with some commentary. The full questionnaire may be viewed here. Question: "Do you support requiring that bonuses and/or incentive pay including any form of 'merit pay' be…
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Wichita property tax still high on commercial property

Wichita property tax still high on commercial property

An ongoing study reports that property taxes on commercial and industrial property in Wichita are high. In particular, taxes on commercial property in Wichita are among the highest in the nation. The study is produced by Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and Minnesota Center for Fiscal Excellence. It's titled "50 State Property Tax Comparison Study, June 2017" and may be read here. It uses a variety of residential, apartment, commercial, and industrial property scenarios to analyze the nature of property taxation across the country. I've gathered data from selected tables for Wichita. In Kansas, residential property is assessed at 11.5…
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