Stephan Bisaha

News Reporter

Stephan Bisaha covers education and young adult life for KMUW and the Kansas News Service. Before coming to Wichita, he was an NPR Kroc Fellow. Stephan has reported national stories for Morning Edition, All Things Considered and other NPR programs. His work has ranged from analyzing data for an investigation into the Department of Veteran Affairs to the business of emoji pillows.

Stephan was honored with a 2020 Regional Murrow Award in Sports Reporting for Kansas Community College Football Now Has Its Own Stars, Netflix Series And Scandals. He received two honorable mentions, in the sports feature and hard news categories, from the Kansas Association of Broadcasters in 2020, along with second place in news features from the Public Media Journalists Association. His 2019 sports feature, Are Video Games A Sport? Hoping To Attract Fans And Students, Kansas Colleges Say Yes, received second place from the Kansas Association of Broadcasters. Stephan has a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism with a concentration in data journalism.
 

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Briana O'Higgins / KMUW

WICHITA, Kansas — Between concerns about schools staying open and the challenges of learning remotely, teachers and students are haunted by another question that goes beyond 2020: Will snow days disappear forever?

Black Friday normally acts as the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season.

But 2020 upended that tradition ... like so many others.

Stephan Bisaha / kmuw

Wichita's board of education voted Monday to extend Thanksgiving break an two extra days.

Students and staff will now take Nov. 23 and 24 off, giving them a full work week away from the classroom — both in-person and virtually.

The district said it's running short on teachers and substitues as the rise in COVID-19 cases in Sedgwick Counties forces employees to isolate and quarantine. 

Superintendent Alicia Thompson told the board it's been a rough couple of weeks.

Stephan Bisaha / Kansas News Service

Editor's Note: On Nov. 13, Emporia State University announced that it will provide free tests to students that want one before traveling. 

WICHITA, Kansas — In just two weeks, thousands of college students in Kansas will board planes and hop into cars daydreaming of sweet potatoes and turkey legs.

Most of those students won’t return to campus for the rest of the semester. To cut the risk of spreading the coronavirus, the majority of universities in Kansas will have students finish the fall semester online.

Chris, flickr Creative Commons

WICHITA — The Wichita Board of Education canceled its plan to let middle and high school students back into the classroom on Thursday as coronavirus cases surge in Sedgwick County.

The vote was 5-2 with board members Ben Blankley and Mike Rodee voting against the motion.

"It’s a disservice to continue in a full remote model for secondary learners even considering our community transmission," Blankley said at Monday night's meeting.

Board member Stan Reeser said he wanted to reopen schools, but that the coronavirus numbers forced him to vote otherwise.

Democrats and Republicans in Kansas will keep their seats in the U.S. House, as Tuesday’s election favored the incumbents plus the Republican candidate in the 2nd Congressional District.

Stephan Bisaha / Kansas News Service

Kansas community colleges should be having a good year.

No crowded, germy dorms. Most of their students don’t need to travel. Plus, community colleges are cheaper and normally thrive in a bad economy.

Instead, they actually lost students. Enrollment fell more than 14% this fall. That’s causing the experts who track the industry to wonder about past assumptions.

Stephan A Bisaha / KMUW

The Wichita school board decided to move forward with its plan to transition middle and high school students to in-person learning.

The board held a special meeting on Friday to discuss the worsening coronavirus pandemic in Sedgwick County. The positive rate for COVID-19 testing has risen from 5.4% on Oct. 1 to 14.5% on Thursday, the last day data was available on Sedgwick County’s coronavirus dashboard.

Brian Grimmett / Kansas News Service

WICHITA, Kansas — Amid a surge of coronavirus cases across rural Kansas, Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly provided details on her new statewide testing plan Wednesday, adding 400,000 more by the end of the year.

That's nearly double the amount of tests available now, with the goal of reaching a total of 1 million tests. The extra capacity is expected to go to schools and high-risk populations, like those living and working at nursing homes.

stacey_newman / Getty Images/iStockphoto

After learning virtually since the beginning of the school year, Wichita middle and high school students will be able to return to in-person classes next month.

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