Findings suggest KC district improving

Thursday, January 24, 2002

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Though it warned Kansas City's public schools aren't yet back from the brink, an educational review team said Wednesday the district has made significant progress as it seeks to regain accreditation.

State review team leader Lance Hutton issued his informal report after a two-day inspection of the district. The report now goes to the Department of Education, which will recommend whether the state education board should restore the district's accreditation. That decision is expected in March or April.

Full or provisional accreditation would avert a state takeover on July 1. A takeover is required by law if the district fails to show sufficient improvement roughly two years after losing accreditation.

Kansas City schools lost accreditation in October 1999 after failing to meet any of the state's 11 performance standards. This week's review did not deal with specific academic standards, but with the district's overall health.

The inspection reviewed what the state calls "resource and process standards" -- a more general measure of how the district's resources are being used to help students learn.

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