USD 489 approves two-year lease with Hadley Center to provide more room for programs

Blaise Mesa
Hays Daily News
The Hays Unified School District Board of Education   board approved a lease at the Hadley Center, which will soon house the Early Childhood Special Education program and the Hays High School Special Education Transition program

The Hays Unified School District Board of Education unanimously approved a two-year lease that will give USD 489 more room for special education programs at its May 17 meeting. 

“The space is getting a little tight,” Kyle Carlin, special education cooperative director, told the board at the meeting. 

The board approved a lease at the Hadley Center, which will soon house the Early Childhood Special Education program and the Hays High School Special Education Transition program. The Hadley Center previously housed Fort Hays State University’s Tiger Tots programs, so the space already has some infrastructure required to teach these student populations. The space is already licensed by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. 

Carlin said the two-year lease will allow the district to see how well the space is working and give them the opportunity to move to a different location if they aren’t satisfied with the agreement. He said he wants the Early Childhood Special Education Center moved back to a district building within the two years but said there needs to be space to do so. 

The Hadley Center’s access to main street makes it feel more like a work environment than a school environment, Carlin said, adding that the Hadley Center’s 100 tenants can also be good partners in the future. 

“Students will still access things at Hays High,” he said. “But we wanted to see them access high school more like college.”

Rent for the building is $4,150 a month, but FHSU will contribute $1,300 per month to help pay for rent if interns and other students have access to the facility. 

“The fact that we can house two programs in this space really takes advantage of some of the resources that are there,” he said.