Plan Would Hit Poorer Districts Hardest

A newspaper analysis has found that a proposal for changing how Kansas public schools are funded appears to cut money from most of the state’s poorest school districts while protecting the wealthiest.

The Topeka Capital-Journal examined the effect of a proposal to use block grants to distribute money instead of the state’s existing per-student formula. The review found that many of the reductions in the plan are achieved by shrinking a type of state aid meant to help less wealthy school districts that aren’t able to raise as much money with property taxes.

The newspaper says it appears 90 percent of the state’s richest districts would gain state aid for operational expenses under the plan. But 80 percent of the poorest districts would lose money, about $170,000 on average.