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Olathe School District says budget cuts to 2022-23 school year happening at all levels

Olathe Public Schools
Posted at 6:49 PM, Mar 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-28 19:49:19-04

OLATHE, Kan. — The Olathe School District is cutting some positions for the 2022-2023 school year due to budget challenges.

District spokeswoman Maggie Kolb said the district must cut 6% of its operating budget.

There are multiple factors that led to the cuts, including an unexpected drop in enrollment, the decrease in Board of Tax Appeals funding that is given to fast-growing districts as new facilities are opened and unforeseen pandemic-related challenges.

Kolb said the district has already notified staff in some positions that will be cut next school year, including library clerks at middle and high schools.

She said the cuts are happening at all levels within the district.

"These decisions are not made easily and these are decisions that are really, really, tough to make," Kolb said.

A library clerk, who asked to remain anonymous, tweeted saying she is heartbroken to lose her position and she's not sure how her $12/hour salary will help the budget shortfall.

She also tweeted saying fully staffed libraries are imperative to the collective good of the school.

It's not yet known how many and what other positions the district will cut.

Kolb said the district hopes to take care of a lot of the cuts by not hiring for positions staff leave at the end of this school year.

She said the district hopes to minimize the impact on students and will take care of its staff the best it can.

"Those staff members whose positions have been eliminated, we are working closely with them and working individually with them and encouraging them to apply for other open positions in our system," Kolb said.