Focus on Kentucky Public Education Funding
Kentucky public schools remain chronically underfunded. From student transportation to school safety needs, lawmakers need to make sure that Kentucky students, teachers and staff can be at their best in and outside the classroom. To that effect, KASS is calling on the Kentucky General Assembly to:
- Improve SEEK Funding
- The current formula is below the 2008 level (indexed for inflation)
- Fully fund student transportation and full-day kindergarten
- Transportation funding remains below the 2008 level (indexed for inflation)
- Guarantee schools have the resources to hire state-mandated student resource officers and mental health professionals
Recruit and Retain High-quality Public School Teachers & Staff
Kentucky public schools are facing a teaching and staffing crisis. Across the Commonwealth, people are exiting the teaching profession or choosing to forgo a career in public education all together. That’s why Kentucky lawmakers have the opportunity to:
- Institute competitive pay standards for Kentucky teachers and support staff
- Increase professional development opportunities and “learn to earn” apprenticeship pathways for current and aspiring educators
- Identify the education career pathway as a high demand work sector
Unleash Lifelong Learning
The future is now. Growing the economy is dependent on ensuring generations of Kentucky kids develop into the next generation of leaders. To make it happen, Kentucky elected officials should:
- Create more opportunities for innovative programs and more choice options in public schools
- Tailor education needs around every child in every county across the Commonwealth so that they are ready to succeed at school, home and in the workplace
- Provide more flexible certification options to empower educators to better meet the needs of their students, especially in science and math
2024 KAS Key Legislation
The Kentucky House of Representatives approved the 2022 state budget, but the Kentucky Senate needs to add three key Kids First Kentucky education provisions to the bill. Click to read more.
House Bill 1 (HB1) is a comprehensive bill outlining the state budget for 2022. HB1 highlights include:
- Increases the SEEK per pupil guarantee base amount, from $4,000 to $4,100, and then $4,200. (This is progress but falls significantly short of the $4,768 inflationary equivalent of 1990 SEEK Base.)
- Funds full-day kindergarten to help empower students from all backgrounds.
- Fully funds all required/requested contributions to the Teachers’ Retirement System for pension and retiree health.
- Increases funding for Family Resource and Youth Service Centers (FRYSCs) to reduce educational barriers facing at-risk students.
- Invests in Career and Technical Education (CTE) funding to grow the Commonwealth’s workforce and economy.
- Dedicates $100 million in SFCC assistance to remodel, remedy and refurbish our aging school facilities.
While KASS applauds state lawmakers for prioritizing education funding, our 171 superintendents representing every school district in the Commonwealth, calls on the Kentucky Senate to add three common sense, common ground reforms to HB1:
- Fully fund transportation so that students and parents can safely get to school and focus on learning rather than worrying if and when they’ll get picked up or dropped off by their school bus.
- Increase SEEK funding because we are investing less per student (indexed for inflation) currently than we did more than three decades ago.
- Give school districts more freedom by providing the much-needed resources to help superintendents ensure student success at school, work and in the community.
Go to the “How We Can Help” page to access social media posts, talking points, email and call scripts and much more to make sure your voice is heard.
This bipartisan bill helps Kentucky students, public schools and families affected by the devastating December 2021 storms. House Bill 5 was signed into law by Governor Beshear on January 13, 2022. Click for more details on House Bill 5.
We appreciate the hard work of the Kentucky General Assembly and the Beshear Administration for their collective support for the countless students, families and schools affected by the devastating December 2021 storms. Signed into law by Governor Beshear on January 13, 2022, House Bill 5 (HB5):
- Directs $200 million to the newly created West Kentucky State Aid Funding for Emergencies Fund.
- Includes $45 million to support local schools and procure temporary housing for those affected by the deadly and destructive December storms.
House Bill 9 was recently introduced in the House and has since been referred to the Appropriations and Revenue Committee. KASS strongly opposes this bill as it would harm our schools and communities. Click here for more.
If signed into law, HB9 would:
- Allow for-profit companies outside of Kentucky to dictate their own educational philosophy on our schools without any accountability or transparency.
- Allow these same for-profit companies to profit from our tax dollars – owning buildings, technology and additional assets paid for by Kentucky taxpayers.
- Unravel Kentucky’s unique athletic landscape, creating winners and losers and leading to ‘superpowers’ that would completely destroy the much beloved Kentucky Basketball Sweet 16 tournament – not to mention the spirit of competition in every sport.
The Kentucky Senate voted in favor of Senate Bill 1 (SB1) on January 8, 2022. The measure will provide greater flexibility to local school districts and superintendents to ensure student, principal and staff success. The bill is waiting further consideration by the Kentucky House of Representatives. Click for more information.
If signed into law, SB1 would:
- Allow superintendents and education leaders to collaborate with principals, school councils, and other stakeholders to ensure a coherent and aligned curriculum district-wide.
- Ensure successful, innovative learning programs are properly funded, sustainable and scalable.
- Provide superintendents the authority, in consultation with the school council, to hire principals, and determine how to deploy the BOE allocations to the school.
- Give a significant voice to teachers and parents through school councils, along with greater community buy-in.
On January 14, 2022, Governor Beshear signed Senate Bill 25 (SB25), a major piece of legislation to provide pandemic relief to Kentucky public schools. Click to read more.
During the first week of the legislative session, KASS scored an important bipartisan victory with Senate Bill 25 (SB25). Signed into law on January 14, 2022, SB25 will:
- Extend the temporarily revised retirement reemployment provisions until June 30, 2022; and provides up to 10 days of remote instruction per school for the remainder of the school year for pandemic-related issues.
- Help superintendents, school boards and their teams continue to navigate the pandemic. School districts have prioritized in-person learning, but superintendents need the tools to respond to an unpredictable environment when conditions change that compromise the health and safety of students and staff.
You Can Make a Difference
Help us ensure students, teachers, and schools are equipped with the resources they need to be at their best every day.