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Sunday Kansas com SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2012 ■ FINAL EDITION ■ $2.00 K-STATE KNOCKS OFF BAYLOR WICHITA STATE ROLLS ON THE ROAD SPORTS, 1D SPORTS, 1D DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT: WHO PAYS? SPECIAL REPORT: GRADING OUR SCHOOLS, 8A-11A SCHOOL’S TURNAROUND EFFORT IS PAYING OFF Fernando Salazar/The Wichita Eagle Construction is under way on the Ambassador Hotel at Douglas and Broadway. The boutique hotel is set to open at the end of the year. Hotel vote about more than just guest taxes BY BILL WILSON The Wichita Eagle The upcoming vote on a $2.25 million public incentive for the Ambassador Hotel at Douglas and Broadway is a referendum on the future of downtown redevelopment, the hotel’s backers say. But the free market/limited government proponents who forced the issue to a public vote say the Q&A on the stakes are broader: Governments project and choose winners and losers when the election they provide public incentives for private development projects. Wichita voters will go to the polls Feb. 28 to decide whether developer Paul Coury’s group can keep $2.25 million in guest tax revenues over the next 15 years. That’s 75 percent of the estimated $3 million in guest taxes the 117-room INSIDE, 12A Jaime Green/The Wichita Eagle Enterprise Elementary School fifth-graders in Megan Becker’s class learn math. Enterprise has shown marked improvement on assessment tests this year. BY SUZANNE PEREZ TOBIAS The Wichita Eagle s vision statements go, Enterprise Elementary School’s is pretty simple: “Change is possible. Success is expected.” Principal Pam Stead says that belief drives every decision at the south Wichita school, which has become an island of hope and success in one of the district’s poorest areas. “When people know you care about them and love them and want them to succeed, they do it,” Stead said. “That really is the biggest piece of the whole puzzle.” Five years ago, state officials listed the highpoverty school as “on improvement” because it didn’t meet test targets, and it faced a host of sanctions under the federal No Child Left Behind Act. But the school has battled back. Last spring its scores improved for the third year in a row, and it has nearly closed an achievement gap – more like a canyon – between white and non-English- A Jaime Green/The Wichita Eagle Enterprise Elementary School kindergartner Tatyanna Allen reads in a small group as part of the Read Well program at the school. GRADING OUR SCHOOLS: MORE ONLINE Please see HOTEL, Page 12A Go to to find more information, including: ■ School-by-school state assessment scores for the entire state COALITION IS CONSIDERING A LAWSUIT Document fees to get voter ID raise concerns ■ Grade-by-grade breakdowns of scores for schools in Sedgwick, Butler and Harvey counties ■ Comprehensive demographic and assessment score data via our searchable database Please see ENTERPRISE, Page 8A BY RICK PLUMLEE The Wichita Eagle PRICE COULD HIT $4.25 BY LATE APRIL Gas prices may be heading for record highs NEW YORK — Gasoline prices have never been higher this time of the year. At $3.53 a gallon, prices are already up 25 cents since Jan. 1. And experts say they could reach a record $4.25 a gallon by late April. “You’re going to see a lot more staycations this year,” says Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy & Economic Research. “When the price gets ©2012 The Wichita Eagle and Beacon Publishing Co., 825 E. Douglas, Wichita, KS 67202. SUNDAY BY CHRIS KAHN Associated Press anywhere near $4, you really see people react.” Already, W. Howard Coudle, a retired machinist from Crestwood, Mo., has seen his monthly gasoline bill rise to $80, up from about $60 in December. The closest service station is selling Arts & Leisure Business 1C 9B Classified Crosswords regular for $3.39 per gallon. “I guess we’re going to have to drive less, consolidate all our errands into one trip,” Coudle says. “It’s just oppressive.” The surge in gas prices follows A coalition is considering a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the state’s new voter photo identification law, but Secretary of State Kris Kobach is confident the law will hold up in court. The need to pay for some underlying documents in order to obtain a free ID appears to be a key issue, although the Kansas Voter Coalition wouldn’t talk about specific legal strategies. More than a half-dozen groups, including the Kansas chapters of the League of Women Voters and American Civil Liberties Union, make up the coalition. “We are considering a suit if there continues to be barriers to voting and requirement to have to pay Please see GAS PRICES, Page 4A 1F 8C Local & State Obituaries 1B 2B Opinion 14A, 15A Real Estate 1E Slimmed down and revved up With bariatric surgery, “I’m living my life instead of dreaming about it.” Tammy Metzger weighed 312 pounds when she reached out to Via Christi Weight Management, the region’s most experienced bariatric surgery team. In just 18 months she’s dropped 144 pounds and the thrill is back in her life. If you’re 100 pounds overweight, call Via Christi Weight Management to see if bariatric surgery is right for you. 855.767.5232 Please see VOTER ID, Page 7A Sports Weather 1D 12B Scan code to hear Tammy’s story

February edition of the Wichita Eagle

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