Opinion Columns & Blogs

Wichita school district anticipated not receiving funding

The Wichita school district is looking smart for not counting on receiving about $1.2 million in state aid. The money, which was built into the state funding formula, was based on expected statewide increases in property tax revenue. Jim Freeman, the district’s chief financial officer, told the Wichita school board last August that there was a high probability the district wouldn’t get that funding, because plunging oil and gas revenues were lowering valuations in parts of the state. Sure enough, the Kansas State Department of Education recently sent out notices warning that districts were unlikely to receive the funding, which had been expected to total $11.5 million statewide, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported. Unlike Wichita, some districts had planned on the funding, so they are now scrambling to adjust their budgets late in the fiscal year. – Phillip Brownlee