Senator Steve Abrams to present topics in Kansas education

At this Friday’s meeting of the Wichita Pachyderm Club, Kansas Senator Dr. Steve Abrams, Republican from Arkansas City, will speak on Kansas education. Abrams served 14 years on the Kansas State Board of Education. In 2008 he was elected to the Kansas Senate from the 32nd district, which covers all of Cowley and Sumner counties, and a small portion of Sedgwick County around and including the city of Mulvane.

Abrams said his presentation will cover three main points: First, we need an education funding formula in Kansas that is not incomprehensible to most people. Second, we need to more closely align those who are responsible for the academics with those who are responsible for the funding. Finally, we must change the funding formula so that it will accommodate and encourage students that want to graduate from high school and also want to receive career and technical education certificates.

All are welcome to attend Pachyderm club meetings. The program costs $10, which includes a delicious buffet lunch including salad, soup, two main dishes, and ice tea and coffee. The meeting starts at noon, although it’s recommended to arrive fifteen minutes early to get your lunch before the program starts.

The Wichita Petroleum Club is on the ninth floor of the Bank of America Building at 100 N. Broadway (north side of Douglas between Topeka and Broadway) in Wichita, Kansas (click for a map and directions). Park in the garage just across Broadway and use the sky walk to enter the Bank of America building. Bring your parking garage ticket to be stamped and your parking fee will be only $1.00. There is usually some metered and free street parking nearby.

4 Comments

  • Marje Cochren -

    I will not be able to attend but am very interested as I serve on a school board in NE kansas. His 3 points are the same that we are looking at along with having merit pay for teachers. I am thourghly convinced that money alone will not educate our children. I would like to haveDr. Abrams email address if possible.
    Thank you

  • Does anyone know Dr. Abrams position on school vouchers to tuition tax credits? To me, any reform that does not break the government monopoly of schools is a mere tinkering around the edges.

  • Joseph, I like the idea of tuition tax credits, tax credits for donations to student tuition organizations (such as they have in Florida and Arizona) and to a lesser extent, vouchers.

    That said, these will all be a very hard sell. There are certain things that we can do to promote a more rational approach, even within the current system. The New Teacher Project and the National Council on Teacher Quality, for example, have both issued some interesting reports on the need to evaluate and pay teachers as professionals rather than old-school factory workers locked into a seniority-rules approach.

    Those ideas are certainly compatible with the kinds of school choice you are talking about. Can they be brought about without school choice? The results to date are, as you suggest, marginal.

  • How can we break the government monopoly, since the Feds outlawed local control after Goals 2000? This law put the U.S. under the UN, in my underltanding.

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