Questions & Answers to a possible school shutdown
(Wednesday, June 8, 2016)
Students, Staff, Parents and Patrons:
As you know the Governor and Legislature are under a court-imposed deadline of June 30th to fix the inequities in how the state distributes LOB education dollars. If the deadline is missed schools will not have the funds required to operate in the new fiscal year and will shutdown.
The past two years have been a struggle politically and financially in Kansas. The last thing the Governor and Legislature needs 30 days before the primary election August 2nd is another epic fail and constitutional crisis on their resume. For this reason I am cautiously optimistic that the Legislature and Governor will fix the equity issue. The real question and issue to watch for is what additional political or ideological baggage will they attach to any proposed solution? Unfortunately, I expect the Legislature and Governor to attack the courts and try to impose limitations on our independent judiciary.
I have included some Q & A’s below that may help you understand the potential scope of and plan for a shutdown in the event that our elected officials fail to lead.
Is a school shutdown a certainty? No, the Governor has said he will call a special session for the Legislature to attempt to fix the equity issue. They could do this relatively easily if they possessed the political will and leadership to do so.
When would a shutdown occur? The deadline to address the inequities is June 30th so we anticipate a shutdown would commence on July 1st.
What would a school shutdown look like for USD #372? We are not exactly certain since this is unprecedented however we assume basic operations and access would cease. There may be some services deemed “essential” by the court that may be allowed to continue such as:
What is the likely short-term impact on staff, students and patrons? Essentially all school based activities and services would end such as:
What is the likely long-term impact on staff, students and patrons?
How can parents and students prepare for the implications of a school shutdown?
We will continue to update our website and Facebook page with pertinent information and developments. Please continue to do your part to stay informed on this critical issue. Some reliable sources of information you may want to follow in print, online or on twitter are: Topeka Capital Journal, Kansas City Star, Kansas Association of School Boards, Kansas State Department of Education, Game On Kansas, Randy Watson, Mark Tallman, Celia Llopis-Jepson, Bryan Lowry and Jonathan Shorman.