Some State Schools Struggle to Stay Open

Governor Laura Kelly has told reporters that she believes Kansas should rethink restrictions on remote learning in public schools enacted last year, but top Republicans in the Legislature are so far standing behind the policy.

Kelly’s comments come as a number of schools closed last week, including Eudora, Desoto, Manhattan-Ogden, Bonner Springs, and El Dorado.

Many cited staffing shortages, which are so severe that the state announced last week that substitute teachers will not be required to have college credit hours.

Kansas City, Kansas, schools warned parents to start preparing for school closures because of staff shortages.

The Olathe district, which is the state’s second-largest, is about 65 staff absences away from having to cancel school, according to Superintendent Brent Yeager.

The Wichita district, which is the state’s largest with about 47,000 students, issued a similar warning that closures were possible earlier last week.