SHAWNEE, Kan. — Parents and teachers are still waiting Thursday to hear what will happen in schools across Kansas.
Lawmakers ended regular session Wednesday without a response to a Kansas Supreme Court decision that school funding is unconstitutional.
Superintendents across the ‘Sunflower State’ are waiting for word from Topeka. Shawnee Mission School District’s superintendent, Jim Hinson, will hold a news conference at 11 a.m., Thursday to discuss school finance and the impact it has on the district. The crux of the political posturing centers on the Kansas Supreme Court ruling that school funding is not distributed equitably.
The 47-page ruling in the 6-year-old Gannon v. Kansas case was issued Friday afternoon. It said the state’s latest changes to school finance create “intolerable, and simply unfair, wealth-based disparities” among wealthier and poorer school districts.
School districts are at a standstill even though school is out for summer break. For many schools, maintenance and repairs to buildings will have to wait because they don’t know what type of budget they’ll have.
The Kansas Department of Revenue announced that the state had missed May revenue estimates by $74.5-million, meaning it has a shortfall of $50 million to make up before the end of June. June 30 is the deadline for lawmakers to create a new formula or public schools across the state will be shut down.