that paragon of Mainstream Lib Media.
“Because here is how it plays out in Hays: Had Topeka followed through on the funding they guaranteed by law, USD 489 would have received an additional $2.9 million this school year and approximately the same for the upcoming year.
Since lawmakers reneged in order to support Gov. Sam Brownback’s massive income tax cuts, Hays has a $1.3 million shortfall for next year. Administrators and school board members have gone through the budget, pulled out all the fixed cost items and mandated programs—and are down to eliminating staff positions to make up the deficit.
Last week, individual teachers began receiving notices. Almost 20 tenured and non-tenured educators have been told they won’t be on the payroll come July 1.
Administrators are doing their utmost to keep student-teacher ratios close to the levels they are currently. USD 489 Curriculum Director Shanna Dinkel told The Hays Daily News on Friday that elementary schools will have 21.65 students per teacher. If the district hadn’t needed to have a reduction in force, that ratio would have been 20.4:1. Next year’s middle school will be 25.4:1 and the high school will be 23.35:1.
Superintendent Dean Katt is attempting to make the best of a bad situation, but said: “We’ll have to watch what the Legislature is doing.”
That is a horrible way to be expected to run a school district. Lawmakers already have eliminated the state’s primary funding source with the income tax cuts, and now are transferring the ramifications of that unsustainable and unnecessary act down to the local level.”