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Education

Kansas Governor Says School Budget Cuts Still Coming

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Brad Wilson
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Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is not planning to back off budget cuts to public schools even though tax collections were better than expected last month.

As those reductions approach, districts are trying to figure out where to cut. 

There was some hope that the governor would back away from $28 million in K-12 cuts he announced in early February if revenue rebounded a bit.

After revenues fell short of expectations in December and January, the state collected $22 million more in taxes than expected in February.

But Budget Director Shawn Sullivan says the education reductions are still coming.

Olathe Superintendent Dr. Marlin Berry says his district stands to lose at least $1.55 million before the current fiscal year ends June 30.

That could go as high $2.5 million depending on what the legislature decides.

“And the unfortunate part for us is that our reductions will have faces to them. There will be programs and people we’ll have to reduce if the number gets too big,” Berry says.

Berry says if the reduction is closer to $1.5 million the district has a pretty good chance of absorbing the cut without layoffs.

All Johnson County districts face cuts.

The State Department of Education estimates that Blue Valley could lose $1.17 million and Shawnee Mission could lose $1.44 million.

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