Wichita School District: Is Another Bond Proposal the Best Idea?

The Flint Hills Center for Public Policy in Wichita has a report titled USD 259: Is Another Bond Proposal the Best Idea?

The Wichita School Board is pushing a $370 million bond and Wichita taxpayers should contemplate whether or not this is really going to improve student performance in Wichita. While spending has more than doubled over the last decade, enrollment is stagnant and performance is low.

3 Comments

  • Two reports from the Flint Hills group both discuss enrollment for 259.

    One says: With a request for all this money school enrollment must be rapidly increasing, right?
    Wrong. In the 1999-2000 school year—when voters approved the last bond issue—
    enrollment was 45,055.4. For the last full school year, 2006-2007, enrollment was 45,231.9,
    a scant increase of 0.4 percent.

    The other says:

    “Since the 1999-2000 school year (when the last bond issue was
    passed) enrollment has only increased 1.4 percent,” says John LaPlante, Education Policy Fellow at the
    Flint Hills Center for Public Policy.

    Aside from this is the fact that most of the references sited in the this article are other articles by LaPlante. If this is truly an organization that they state is “a Kansas think tank created as an
    independent voice to help political decision makers make informed choices. The Flint
    Hills Center for Public Policy is a non-profit, nonpartisan policy think tank. While not
    involved in the implementation or administration of government policy, our goal is to
    inform and raise public awareness of policy issues.” shouldn’t the articles that are referenced include both sides of an issue and not just the facts against. Has student achievement increased over the last 8-9 years? I’m not saying that isnt room to grow. Lets look a little further at this and think the students that first benefitted from the completion of the bond projects are now in 4th grade.

  • Bob Weeks -

    Curious, are you denying the facts in the articles?

    As far as balance goes, do you think there’s balance in the materials and presentations that USD 259 produces?

    Then, what is the trend in student achievement in recent years? Would you please tell us?

  • Actually just really curious about it. If a group says that is it “think tank” about issues – should both sides be discussed? There are pro’s and con’s to almost everything It seems that this group could be someone that lays out both sides with factual information so that voters can has a chance to read material with no bias – just facts.

    An article released by the district notes the gains that schools have made. There is also an article from the paper that was also noted the gains made by the district, while suburban schools scores in our area dropped. The district is doing some very good things. A voter needs to see both sides.

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