Wichita Students Head To School Under New Busing System

By: Natasha Trelfa Email
By: Natasha Trelfa Email

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Wichita public school students will head back to school Thursday and for the first time in 38 years, there will not be what is called forced busing.

Earlier this year, the Wichita school board ended the busing practice. The decision allows parents to choose whether their kids will attend a nearby neighborhood school or continue to be bused.

"When I got bused, I had to go all the way across town," said Wana Richardson, who's son will attend Spaght Magnet, "and now it's closer so he can get home instead of having to wait for the bus."

District officials said some parents have decided to continue to bus their children to the schools they already attended. However, officials said some schools could see anywhere from 25 to 100 more students enrolled in schools closer to their homes.

"I hear from parents that it's very convenient," said Kim Sherfield, the principal at Spaght. "A lot of parents are happy about that choice."

It's a move school officials said would be good for the future of the district.

"Wichita has really been blessed with a lot of neighborhood schools and we are trying to keep that small neighborhood concept," said Greg Rasmussen, the assistant superintendent of elementary education for Wichita Public Schools.

Officials said they really won't know how the schools' populations have changed until the school year gets underway.

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