A bill has been introduced in the Kansas House of Representatives which would require consolidation of small school districts and increase the ability to manage schools through common accounting standards and information availability.
The bill, which is HB 2728 “an act concerning school districts; relating to the reorganization thereof,” has been assigned to the Kansas House Education Budget committee.
Highlights of the act include the requirement that a school district have a full-time equivalent enrollment of at least 10,000 students. A “school district re-organization commission” of 11 members would draw the boundaries of the new districts. Each of the districts would be governed by a seven-member board.
The bill lists a number of the duties of the newly-formed regional education centers. Many are aimed at efficiency and removing duplication of effort.
One of the provisions of the bill is that the new districts will use a statewide uniform accounting and reporting system based on a uniform chart of accounts. Further, the bill mandates reform of school district’s data-gathering and sharing effort. A section of the bill prefaced with this statement: “The purpose of this section is to allow any person desiring to obtain, analyze and compare financial and performance data of school districts the ability to do so.”
Furthermore, “Such system shall be an internet-based data reporting system which is freely available and accessible.”
Other information on this bill is at Consolidation Heats Up.