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Decision day: Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools bond hangs in balance

Posted at 6:47 AM, May 07, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Today voters in KCK are faced with a $420 million bond decision. It aims to improve Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools buildings.

The bond would allow the district to build five new schools, an aquatic center, a library branch and take care of other improvements, like eliminating mobile classrooms.

The district will combine six schools into three, and they say those buildings are overcrowded or need a lot of maintenance work.

The library and aquatic center would be open to the public.

The district says it will pay off the bond over 30 years using property tax money. The bond would cost taxpayers $97.50 cents more for every $100,000 in property value.

Superintendent Stubblefield explained how these changes would benefit students.

“There’s a lot of research out there that shows students in up-to-date modern facilities tend to outperform students who are not. Some of the basic things like lighting, air quality, technology, furniture and flexible meeting spaces ... maker spaces, those kind of things really changes what the learning environment can be like,” said Dr. Anna Stubblefield, KCKPS Superintendent.

Those opposed to the bond have said the district should be focused more on academics.

Stubblefield says the district is focused on improving both academics and facilities.

A Carl B. Bruce middle schooler explained that he wants to see a better side of the school district.

“Older schools, they probably get harder to take care of and focusing on them more. People don’t look at those schools and say ‘Oh I want to go here because it’s so old.’ It’s not showing the color that it should be showing,” said Xavi, a Carl B. Bruce eighth-gade student.

Polls close at 7 p.m. Tuesday evening. KCK residents can find their polling place here.