Capitol Bureau

Sticker-shocked Kansas lawmakers may temper education goals

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Kansas legislators who suffered sticker shock from a report on the costs of improving public schools are considering whether to make the state's education goals less ambitious.

Some Republican lawmakers appeared less anxious Monday after hearing from two out-of-state consultants who issued the report last week. It said improving schools could require the state to increase its education funding by $2 billion a year to give schools a 44 percent boost.

That big price tag is tied to increasing the state's high school graduation rate from 86 percent to 95 percent and vastly improving how students perform on standardized tests.

The consultants said during a legislative committee hearing that costs would be lower if the goals were less ambitious.

Lawmakers face a Kansas Supreme Court mandate to increase education funding.

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