Author

Noah Taborda

Noah Taborda

Noah Taborda started his journalism career in public radio at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri, covering local government and producing an episode of the podcast Show Me The State while earning his bachelor’s degree in radio broadcasting at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Noah then made a short move to Kansas City, Missouri, to work at KCUR as an intern on the talk show Central Standard and then in the newsroom, reporting on daily news and feature stories.

Kansas criminal justice commission reviews cost-effective recommendations for state lawmakers

By: - September 21, 2021

TOPEKA — Legal experts and state legislators serving on a panel to reform the Kansas criminal justice system are optimistic their next set of recommendations will gain traction when lawmakers return to the Capitol in January.  During their second year of work, members of the Kansas Criminal Justice Reform Commission worked to establish recommendations for […]

Criminal justice panel hashes out potential changes to Kansas offender registry

By: - September 20, 2021

TOPEKA — Criminal justice advocates, experts and law enforcement are debating potential changes to the Kansas drug and sex offender registry, including whether registries should be made public and an exit mechanism for some offenders. Of primary concern for the Kansas Criminal Justice Reform Commission Subcommittee on Proportionality and Sentencing is whether drug offenders should […]

Judge won’t block new Kansas voting law

By: - September 16, 2021

TOPEKA — A Shawnee County judge Thursday allowed Kansas to continue enforcing a controversial election law, rejecting arguments it will inhibit voter registration and education efforts.  District Judge Teresa Watson denied a request by four voting advocacy groups to temporarily block the law while a lawsuit filed before the statute took effect July 1 plays […]

Kansas special education council approves new target metrics for children with disabilities

By: - September 16, 2021

TOPEKA — The Kansas council providing special education policy guidance to the state board of education approved Thursday a target high school graduation rate of 80.5% for children with disabilities in 2020, increasing by 0.5% each year through 2025. The Kansas State Special Education Advisory Council is entering a new cycle of the state performance […]

Kansas cold case task force lays groundwork for sharing DNA database hits

By: - September 15, 2021

TOPEKA — Members of a task force developing protocol for newly discovered DNA evidence in closed cases is backing a recommendation laying out a process to ensure defense counsel is made aware when a match is found in DNA registries. Following an August meeting of the Alvin Sykes Cold Case Task Force to discuss possible […]

As child care options dwindle, Kansas advocates seek funding to address staffing shortages

By: - September 15, 2021

TOPEKA — Lack of accessible child care often pushes Kansas families to leave their children with overworked or unlicensed caregivers. Amid a growing workforce shortage exacerbated by the pandemic, child care advocates say there is an immediate need for long-term solutions. Throughout the last decade, the number of family child care providers across Kansas has […]

Four Kansas school districts temporarily close as COVID-19 outbreaks hit 31 schools

By: - September 14, 2021

TOPEKA — Kansas education commissioner Randy Watson says at least 31 Kansas schools are reporting outbreaks of COVID-19, forcing more school districts to close temporarily. COVID-19 cases are up dramatically in school-age children compared to last school year as school districts grapple with masking policies, testing strategies and vaccinations for eligible students, Watson said. Some […]

School COVID-19 safety panel aims to keep kids in school while reducing COVID-19 outbreaks

By: - September 13, 2021

TOPEKA — Gov. Laura Kelly is urging a new COVID-19 school safety workgroup to focus on policies that will not only keep Kansas children and staff healthy but in the classroom, after hundreds of infections were reported in school districts across the state. Kelly established the Safer Classrooms Workgroup as outbreaks and clusters forced some […]

Soldiers at Fort Riley reflect on their oath and service on anniversary of 9/11

By: - September 11, 2021

TOPEKA — Memories of the smoke plumes, the chaos and the intensity of Sept. 11, 2001, still maintain a powerful hold over many soldiers in Kansas. For some members of the military serving at Fort Riley now, that day changed the trajectory of their lives and gave them a new purpose. Now 20 years from […]

Kansas lawmakers weigh options for Docking renovation, new KDHE lab

By: - September 7, 2021

TOPEKA — Kansas legislators Tuesday considered two proposals for what to do with the long-neglected Docking State Office Building. Years of neglect and a desire by former Gov. Sam Brownback to demolish the 62-year-old complex adjacent to the Statehouse resulted in health hazards and deteriorating insides. Earlier this year, lawmakers approved up to $120 million […]

Kansas data doesn’t reflect reality as COVID-19 rips through schools

By: and - September 7, 2021

TOPEKA — School districts across the state independently reported hundreds of infections of COVID-19 among students and staff in the first two weeks of school, while the state’s official ledger showed just two small outbreaks. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s data on school infections is unreliable because of the difficulty in tracing sources […]

Thousands of Kansans face threat of eviction as pandemic exposes housing crisis

By: and - September 6, 2021

TOPEKA — Sheena Mooney has spent the past year without a job or a safety net living in a trailer park a few miles from Washburn. Mooney lost her job at Frito-Lay in March 2020, a job she enjoyed, fell behind on her rent and was evicted that August. She applied for unemployment but did […]