Income-tax cuts in Kansas championed by Governor Sam Brownback have led to credit downgrades, political turmoil and deepening budget deficits. This week, they’ll start forcing schools to close early.
As lawmakers work to erase a projected $800 million budget gap for the fiscal year starting July 1, at least eight school districts that saw their funding cut this year because of a greater-than-projected slide in state tax collections will begin shutting down before the scheduled end of classes. Dozens of others have eliminated or cut programs.
“We felt we didn’t have a choice,” said Janet Neufeld, superintendent of Twin Valley schools, which will end the academic year on Friday, 12 days early.