HAYS — Ask Hays Unified School District 489 Superintendent John Thissen about the most significant challenge affecting Hays Public Schools in the past 20 years, and his answer is immediate and unequivocal:

“Our challenges have been tremendous because the state has not funded facilities for the most physically and mentally challenged children,” Thissen said.

Around 19 percent of USD 489 students receive some type of special education services, Thissen said. That compares to the state average of 14 percent.

He said there has been a lot of discussion among school superintendents in the state of “where is the limit? We want to serve everybody, but is the majority not being served? How much is being taken from the majority? We are still in the mode

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