Five area Kansas school districts are among those set to get additional state aid that school officials requested for extraordinary needs.
The Kansas State Board of Education on Thursday unanimously approved the recommendation of a hearing committee for the Extraordinary Need State Aid program.
Thirty-four districts requested a total of $8.4 million from the fund, established as part of the block grant school finance law in an effort to compensate districts for unexpected costs due to enrollment spikes, drops in property valuation or other big revenue losses.
All but three of the 34 districts would get money from the state, should funds ever go into it.
The Kansas Legislature approved $13 million for the extraordinary needs fund, but the money is contingent on the sale of the Kansas Bioscience Authority. If the authority sells for at least $38 million, then the fund would be loaded with the full $13 million.
Any amount less than the hoped-for price tag would be deducted from the fund. “If it sells for $25 million or less, there will be no funds to distribute,” said Denise Kahler, spokeswoman for the Kansas State Department for Education.
The Spring Hill School District made the largest request, $941,440 for enrollment increases, and was approved for $848,580.
Basehor-Linwood asked for $479,102 for enrollment and transportation increases and was approved for $437,102; Gardner Edgerton was approved for the $300,000 it requested to cover enrollment and hiring additional teachers; Bonner Springs was approved for the $166,000 it requested for increased enrollment and hiring three teachers; and Piper Schools was approved for the $120,000 it asked for to cover enrollment growth and hiring two teachers.