KS Court Ruling Could Bolster Effort to Revamp School Funding

"In a previous ruling, the Kansas Supreme Court said the state’s finance system should be judged by determining if the spending levels achieve certain student outcomes.

University of Kansas constitutional law professor Richard E. Levy says if lawmakers decide to tackle the formula, that’s the angle they’ll probably need to take.

'The focus is on what kind of outcomes, what demonstrated student learning have you produced. The focus is on what you’re achieving, not what you’re putting into the process,' says Levy.

Kansas school finance ruling could pave way to overhaul formula

"Tuesday's court ruling in the ongoing school finance lawsuit could open the door for something Gov. Sam Brownback and Republican leaders in the Legislature have long been calling for — an overhaul of the state's school finance formula.

That's the assessment of Kansas University constitutional law professor Rick Levy. But he said lawmakers should be careful to make sure any new formula is designed to produce the results that the courts are now saying are expected.

Newspaper analysis highlights challenges of prosecuting alcohol-fueled acquaintance rape cases

"In the past 10 years, Douglas County juries convicted three rapists, the Lawrence Journal-World reported.

In the cases, the rapists overpowered their victims, threatened them with weapons or broke into their homes.

But in the few rape trials involving a drunken victim who had been socializing with her alleged attacker, juries acquitted the accused rapist each time. More cases of this sort never went to trial, and defendants either pleaded to lesser crimes or saw their charges dismissed altogether.

...

Analysis: Some rape cases tough to prosecute

"In the past 10 years, Douglas County juries convicted three rapists, the Lawrence Journal-World reported.

In the cases, the rapists overpowered their victims, threatened them with weapons or broke into their homes.

But in the few rape trials involving a drunken victim who had been socializing with her alleged attacker, juries acquitted the accused rapist each time. More cases of this sort never went to trial, and defendants either pleaded to lesser crimes or saw their charges dismissed altogether.

...

At Law School, Is Insensitivity Grounds for an Objection?

"Attorneys belong to a profession that requires many to look squarely at the world's horrors ... They must keep their heads while witnessing awful injustices, appearing before hostile judges, or enduring profane outbursts from other attorneys or clients, all while exhausted by a long week of headaches and heartburn. Hence the alarm a growing number of law school professors feel at the trend of students objecting to parts of the curriculum that they find too upsetting. 

. . . 

CIA interrogation report released

"The US Senate Intelligence Committee this week released their report into the CIA interrogation program, which was established after the 9/11 terror attacks.

. . . 

Producer George Freeman spoke to Raj Bhala, lawyer, author and associate dean for international law at the University of Kansas School of Law, on the release of the CIA interrogation report."

KU professor: Torture report's release shows U.S. strength

"A 500-page U.S. Senate report on the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques has drawn strong reaction. A professor at the University of Kansas said the content may be troubling, but it's important that the report was released.

Raj Bhala, the associate dean for international law at the University of Kansas School of Law, said it's upsetting it took so long for the report to finally come out.

. . . 

Disbarred Kansas City lawyer sentenced for money laundering

Once-prominent Kansas City lawyer Jim Wirken, 70, "pleaded guilty in May to a single money-laundering count, agreeing that he took $116,730 belonging to one of his clients and used it, without permission, in part to pay off a past-due loan.

. . . 

The Missouri Supreme Court has been particularly stern on this issue in recent years, said Barbara Glesner Fines, executive associate dean at the UMKC law school.

'You don’t even have to be dishonest,' Glesner Fines said. 'You can just be careless, and you’ll get in big trouble.'

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