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State and Local Leaders Gather Discuss Education


HUTCHINSON, Kan. – State and local elected officials gathered to discuss education with school leaders at a collaborative luncheon on Friday, April 21, 2023.

The event was hosted by USD 308 at their Hutchinson Career & Technical Education Academy. In partnership with the Hutchinson chapter of the National Education Association, the luncheon gave local officials and school leaders an opportunity to discuss their unique experiences and how to move forward in a collaborative effort to support students and families.

In attendance were members of Hutchinson City Council, Reno County Commissioners, and state legislators, as well as representation from the Kansas Board of Education. Attendees were prompted to share the challenges they see facing education, as well as ideas on how local schools can meet the needs of the communities they serve.

“It is always wonderful to welcome leaders into our schools. Days like today where we can learn from each other, share successes, and talk about difficulties we face are so important. When we have the chance to come together we can collaborate on solutions,” said USD 308 Board Member Kail Denison.

The event is meant to serve as the first of several regularly planned collaborative conversations between elected officials and educational leaders in Reno County. As local school districts face declining enrollment and teacher shortages, leaders are strategizing on ways to adapt and continue providing quality education to students and families. The Leaders Luncheon event began with the goal of creating avenues for conversation and problem-solving.

“Education is a vital component of American society, reflecting a commitment to personal and collective growth, progress, and innovation. It is an essential tool for building a better future for ourselves, our communities, and our nation. I’m thankful for those who took the time to participate in this event and look forward to many more collaborative conversations so we may continue serving our families and communities together,” said USD 308 superintendent Dr. Dawn Johnson.

“What a great day of collaboration with other leaders in the community.  It’s very clear that HCC and USD 308 are working hard to help meet the workforce development needs of local employers.  I appreciate the opportunity to participate on behalf of the City of Hutchinson,” said Greg Fast, Vice-Mayor of Hutchinson.