A long-awaited school funding study released Friday in Topeka was expected to endorse the long-held conservative view that theres no correlation between student performance and the money spent on public schools.
After all, conservative Republican leaders had hand-picked the consultant Lori Taylor, a Texas A&M University professor to take a fresh look at Kansas school spending. Democrats and moderate Republicans who back more education spending feared a low-ball recommendation just as lawmakers begin deliberations on a new funding formula.
But in a stunning development, Taylors study sent a torpedo into bedrock conservative doctrine, concluding that a link does indeed exist between spending and a students educational attainment. She said lawmakers must spend another $1.7 billion over five years to reach performance targets or an additional $2 billion to deliver enhanced educational outcomes.