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Archive for Thursday, February 15, 2001

Chapman school district rethinks transfer argument

February 15, 2001

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— The Chapman school board has a new plan in its quest to recover land taken away by the state school board.

Last year, the Kansas State Board of Education transferred nearly 85 square miles from Chapman to the Abilene school district. The push for the transfer was sparked when the Chapman district closed the elementary school in Talmage, which had served the area.

Chapman had wanted all the land back, but Shawnee County District Judge Nancy Parrish ruled against that request last week. The school board voted this week not to appeal that ruling.

However, the board also voted to ask the state school board to return 70 of the 85 square miles. The other 15 square miles house most of the parents who pushed for the transfer to Abilene, said Chapman Supt. Tony Frieze.

Roughly 70 students live in the disputed area. But Frieze said the Chapman district lost only about 10 of them, with the others given permission to continue at Chapman schools.

Abilene Supt. Marlin Berry said the district doesn't have a response yet to Chapman's new request. He said the judge's decision upholding the transfer means it's time to focus on educating the students in the disputed area.

"We're kind of anxious now to move on and make some positive steps to meet the needs of the students that are in that area of our district," he said.

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