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USD 428 celebrates Public Schools Week
thumps up public schools 2021
While the 2020-2021 School Year has presented challenges, USD 428 has remained open for in-person learning since the first day of school. Enhanced health and safety protocols were critical to keeping the doors open and students learning.

Great Bend USD 428 joined schools across the state and nation to celebrate Public Schools Week, February 22-26, 2021.

“We’ll take any opportunity to celebrate the staff, students, and families of USD 428,” said Khris Thexton, superintendent. “Opening our doors in August and keeping them open for in-person learning has required a tremendous amount of dedication and work by our teachers and staff. As an administrator, but also as a parent, I am grateful for the efforts of many to keep students safe, learning, and growing.”

While current public health concerns have caused many schools across Kansas to operate in a remote or hybrid setting, all schools in USD 428 have remained open since the first day of school on August 27, 2020. 

“We know our students learn best in the classroom,” said Tricia Reiser, director of teaching and learning for USD 428. “We strive for academic growth, but we also care for our students’ social-emotional wellbeing and development.”

USD 428 employs over 700 teachers and staff who are teaching approximately 2,900 students in Great Bend Schools. USD 428 staff also serves 265 students through the Barton County Special Services Cooperative, which provides special education services to Ellinwood 355, Hoisington 431, and Otis-Bison 403.

Public schools across our nation are providing educational opportunities for more than 50 million students inside their school buildings. According to the Learning First Alliance, nine out of every ten students in the US attend public schools. 

“We are preparing every student to become college-ready, career-ready, and life-ready following high school graduation,” said Thexton. “This involves a rich curriculum that includes and goes beyond basic academics. Our students benefit from updated technologies and 1:1 device access, expanded Career and Tech Ed offerings, infusion of STEM programming, vibrant fine arts programming, and robust professional development offerings for teachers.” 

To learn more about USD 428, visit and follow the district on Facebook.