HAYS, Kansas – Tough budget times mean new sacrifices for parents in the Hays district. Facing a $1.6 million dollar, USD 489 decided in May to make several cuts including no longer busing kids who live within two and a half miles of their school.
“Obviously, it causes some hardships and some things to deal with within the district with parents and getting kids to and from school,” said Hays Superintendent Dean Katt.
Some parents are finding it difficult to make arrangements for their kids, but after 16 teachers were laid off due to the budget some parents are relieved that the school is trying to save money.
“You know I think it’s a small sacrifice, anything that the school district can do to save money at this point, I’m okay with it,” said Karrah Robinson, a Hays Middle School parent.
The cuts are saving the district money, but it’s becoming tough on the middle school, with no after school programs, except for athletics.
“And all the kids obviously all the kids don’t play sports, they don’t have an avenue for parents to leave their children at the middle school for an hour say and then pick them up later, so that’s one issue we need to consider,” said Katt.
The school district is looking at other options to help out parents including doing after school programs at Hays middle school and adding a bussing fee for kids who live in a two and a half mile radius of their school.
“If a small fee would be okay to help cover the cost, and someone is able to pay it, then they should be willing to pay it,” said Karrah Robinson.
The district is considering its options and will bring it up with the school board in the future.