Community Letter-Republican-American Article-Warren School

Community Letter-Republican-American Article-Warren School
Posted on 02/13/2018

February 13, 2018

Dear RSD6 Community,
 

Last night the second Budget Workshop Meeting was held. The presentation is available on the district website. While the focus of the workshop was the 2018-2019 budget, the presentation did answer a previous Board question about potential savings and possible impact of closing Warren School. 

This morning the Republican-American ran a headline “Region 6 Plan to Close Warren School Presented.”  Missing in the story was the 2018-2019 budget process, successful mid-year assessment results, and an agreement on energy efficient solar power. If one was to fully believe the paper, it would appear that a detailed closure plan was unveiled and that was the only business on the evening. This was not the case. 

The slides from the presentation included the following information about a process: 

  • By June 2018 the Superintendent will present a detailed plan for school consolidation to the BOE.
  • Plan will include:

    Cost Savings

    Multiple Redistrict Concepts

    Redistrict Impact

    Building Use Plan 

  • The BOE reviews and makes a decision on a plan based on recommendations
  • During the summer of 2018 the three communities vote on the BOE approved plan
  • If approved, plan goes into action for 2019-2020 year, or, 

If denied, no change 

It appears the media has sensationalized a long-standing discussion in Region 6. The coming discussion, and plan, must take all of our work. It is not a plan just driven by a Superintendent and this is clearly not a new topic for Region 6. We are a regional district, with a long standing history, and the consideration for consolidation must be a process, include public input, and requires a referendum. This process will not be where decisions are made in isolation or in haste. 

At the same time we work to make a decision we can no longer ignore declining enrollment, fiscal constraints, growing facility needs, and skyrocketing per-pupil costs. 

The coming conversation for school consolidation is a decision to be made well in advance of the 2019-2020 school year. This process is developing 18 months in advance and the community input and development of a plan to be submitted in June to the Board of Education is essential. Therefore, during April and May, I will be holding meetings at all schools to gain input from all communities. It is from this input that a plan will be developed and shared. 

While school consolidation is not an easy topic, and has many parts to the equation, I welcome the conversation, the dialog, the ideas, and the journey we will take forward for all of our students. 

Regards, 

Chris