Kansas Schools Will Close Early This Spring For Lack Of Funds

Two school districts in Kansas announced this week that the academic year would end early because they lack sufficient funding to keep the schools open.

Concordia Unified School District will finish up six days early, on May 15, and Twin Valley Unified School District will let students out 12 days early, on May 8, the Associated Press reports.

In March, Gov. Sam Brownback (R) signed a school funding overhaul, which resulted in the state's schools losing a combined $51 million meant to help them finish out the current academic year. Members of the Twin Valley school board cited “the present mid-year, unplanned financial cuts recently signed into law" as a reason for the early shutdown.

The school closures are just the latest in a series of drastic measures that Kansas public services have been forced to take in recent years, as Brownback's radical tax cuts have drained state coffers of much needed revenue. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, Kansas cut per-pupil spending by $950 from 2008 to 2014, more than all but two other states. In May 2014, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that school funding levels were unconstitutionally inequitable and ordered the immediate reversal of certain spending cuts.

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