“Rightsizing” Kansas City School District Potentially the Right Move
A map of the schools and their proposed status, according to the plan released by the Kansas City School District.
Click to enlarge.
Superintendent John Covington has a new vision for the Kansas City School District, and it involves halving the number of schools in the district from 61 to 31 or 30. Initially, the “rightsizing” plan sounds drastic, but Covington is adamant. The school district, which had 75,000 students 20 years ago, now has only has 17,500 students and 50-percent occupancy.
The plan (from what has thus far been released) may bring a much-needed change. By consolidating facilities, the school district can better allocate funds tied up in buildings and redundant administrative costs. The district has faced low test scores and budget deficits, and officials hope that this radical change will improve both. As for the cost:
As it stands, the District receives about $12.8 million net monthly less than what that it needs to sustain operations. Fortunately, the District currently has about $91.2 million in its operating fund to coverage the shortage. The Right Sizing plan will drastically reduce costs and wipe away the $12 million deficit. As with your personal budget, the District’s goal moving forward is to not spend more than the revenue it receives.
Given the reduction in student population, rightsizing looks like it could be a step in the right direction, but a full analysis will have to wait until more details are released.