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BCC agrees to take on Pratt LPN program

Barton Community College is already on track to deliver instruction for the Associate Degree of Nursing (ADN) program at Pratt Community College starting this fall. On Tuesday, the BCC Board of Trustees approved supporting expanding that partnership to deliver Pratt’s LPN program instruction.

The associate degree allows students to become Registered Nurses in two years, after finishing the one-year LPN program.

Dr. Kathy Kottas, dean of Workforce Training & Community Education, said if all goes as planned, Barton could have a satellite LPN program at Pratt starting in the fall of 2023. Its RN classes at Pratt will start on Aug. 15.

Kottas and Renae Skelton, Barton’s director of Nursing Education, presented the details at Tuesday’s Board of Trustees meeting.

In 2021, Pratt’s ADN program was discontinued and a partnership was formed with Barton to continue the instruction on its campus.

“It was Pratt’s intention to continue their LPN program,” Kottas said. Along with its pre-nursing courses, that would serve as a “feeder” to the Barton program.

“This spring, they made the decision to suspend the LPN program,” Skelton said.

That change was prompted by low enrollment and staffing challenges, Pratt officials said in making the announcement.

“Without LPN students in Pratt, there’s really nothing to feed our ADN program there,” Skelton said.

Four of Pratt’s LPN students have already opted to finish their program through BCC.

With the trustees' approval to support the expanded partnership, Barton will submit a proposal to the Kansas State Board of Nursing. That will be followed by a site visit before the KSBN makes its decision in December.

Kottas and Skelton said they expect 30 students at Pratt along with the 55 they can accommodate in Great Bend.

Personnel and other business

In other action items, the board approved the renewal of athletic insurance and hired Lisa Eads as a student services specialist at Barton’s Fort Leavenworth Campus. The board also approved contracts for the following personnel on the Barton County campus:

• Jacob Streit – instructor and coordinator of the welding program

• Charles Kinyon – instructor and coordinator of the Commercial Driver’s License program

• Richard Sloan – instructor and coordinator of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) 

• Daniel Williams – director of theatrical activities

• Jamie Minneman – director of instrumental activities

• Brandon Steinert – instructor of communication

It was noted that this is a position change for Steinert, who is currently the chief communications officer at the college.