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Wichita School Board Applauds Kansas Supreme Court Keeping Schools Open

Stephan Bisaha
The Wichita School Board holds a special meeting Thursday to get a budget update.

The Wichita School Board on Thursday applauded an update regarding the Kansas Supreme Court's recent ruling on school funding.

"The possibility of a shutdown no longer exists," Susan Willis, the district's chief financial officer, told board members. "So school will commence on time."

The court said a school finance plan passed earlier this year still isn't adequate, but gave the Kansas Legislature another year to account for inflation in its school funding formula.

School officials in other districts expressed relief at the ruling ealier in the week, though they still face lingering uncertainty regarding school funding beyond the next school year.

Wichita Public Schools still expects to receive about $19 million in additional state funding for the next school year. The district plans on using some of the money to hire new teachers and raise substitute teacher pay.

A first draft of the district’s new budget is expected by the end of July.

Stephan Bisaha, based at KMUW in Wichita, is an education reporter for the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KMUW, Kansas Public Radio, KCUR and High Plains Public Radio covering health, education and politics. Follow him on Twitter @SteveBisaha. Kansas News Service stories and photos may be republished at no cost with proper attribution and a link back to the original post.