Clarksburg/Stamford Merger Study Launched on Wednesday /


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CLARKSBURG, Mass. — The consultants employed by Clarksburg and Stamford, Vt., will lay out a proposed roadmap for the merger of the cities’ elementary colleges proper right into a single, interstate district.


Public Consulting Group, employed earlier this 12 months, will present the options and challenges to such a merger on Wednesday, May 15, at 6:30 p.m. at Clarksburg College. 


The group was charged to try three decisions for the cities: sustaining the established order, merging nevertheless defending the current grade configuration at each school, and merging and creating an early education school at Stamford and a Grade 3-Eight school in Clarksburg. 


Northern Berkshire College Union Superintendent John Franzoni and members of the merger committee have considered Risk 2 — defending the colleges separate — as not being useful to each metropolis. 


A chart created by PCG assorted aspects of the colleges bears that out with Risk 2 not addressing needs similar to class sizes, space and preschool, or monetary financial savings in programming or instruction.


“PCG does not advocate this example as a viable selection,” the report states. “The complexity of merging central office capabilities does not perceive ample benefits to make it a stunning technique.” 


Risk Three would provide the potential for expanded educational benefits that  are considered the primary goal of a merger, although officers moreover hope to see some worth monetary financial savings by combining forces. 


“Worth monetary financial savings are relying on key protection picks, significantly choice school college students and class dimension,” in accordance with the report. “An updated class dimension protection, coupled with continued acceptance of choice school college students, may have the most effective basic have an effect on on funds.”


Clarksburg by state laws has the pliability to easily settle for school choice school college students — children from exterior the town — who fill vacant seats to convey up class sizes. The earnings that flows to the faculty district through school choice may be utilized for programming, salaries and completely different needs. Stamford in the mean time does not have that selection. 


PCG assumes programs sizes of about 19 inside the lower grades through combining the colleges and school-choice school college students and about 22 for Grades 3-8. These are nearer to median class dimension for Massachusetts colleges. No grades may be combined. 


Stamford would offer 5 lecture rooms for 95 school college students and one open for any prekindergarten overflow; Clarksburg would have 9 lecture rooms for 220 school college students, leaving three open for overflow or additional programming. It can moreover allow for Massachusetts Full Analysis System testing, which begins in Grade 3, to be achieved inside the Massachusetts school.


By means of educational strategies, the merged school district should create a curriculum {{and professional}} enchancment coordinator; align curriculum to Massachusetts necessities; provide preschool and sooner than and after school care; provide neighborhood and family events to create new traditions; and create a shared explicit education imaginative and prescient and mission.


The consultants moreover advise selling Stamford College to the town of Stamford to do away with oversight factors; the faculty setting up is a shared superior that holds the town workplaces and library and serves the senior neighborhood. 


The report moreover presents strategies on creating long-term plans for education, providers, insurance coverage insurance policies, and budgeting, and addressing the have an effect on on the Northern Berkshire College Union. One suggestion — to hire a full-time enterprise supervisor — has already been fulfilled. 


Totally different factors that should be addressed are teacher and administration contracts, tax implications, and governance. The details of any merger would moreover need approval of the Massachusetts Division of Coaching and the Vermont Firm of Coaching and the states’ respective Legislatures and the U.S. Congress. 


The look at found there was a need by some stakeholders in closing Clarksburg College if a merger was rejected. The consultants helpful an analysis be achieved on the costs related to closing the setting up, along with continued repairs on the empty development or tearing it down and its affect on the library.


“PCG believes these costs is also way more substantial than the town’s preliminary analysis my advocate,” the report states. 


One different danger is perhaps regionalization inside the faculty union or with North Adams Public Faculties, or additional shared firms similar to meals firms, transportation or shopping for. 


Stamford should get larger clarification on its ability to remain an unbiased school district. The dialogue on merging with Clarksburg was prompted by Vermont’s Act 46 that seeks to streamline governance and corporations by merging school districts. Stamford may be linked with a school 25 miles away beneath Act 46, which led school officers to look south to Clarksburg College, four miles and 10 minutes away. 


Totally different strategies for Stamford included recruiting native school college students who in the mean time are attending private school and creating additional options for heart school school college students to participate in actions with peer groups. 


The education group offered some “frequent strategies” for whichever selection the cities considered. 


For Clarksburg, the strategies are to increase class sizes to 19-22 school college students for a “notable worth monetary financial savings” and to convey it nearer to the median class dimension for Massachusetts colleges. Establishing a prekindergarten, which has some 53 children in that age group whose mom and father principally work exterior the home. Creating an settlement that will give the faculty additional entry to the connected metropolis library. And enchancment of a long-term capital and funding plan to cope with infrastructure deficiencies and maintenance. 


Stamford is recommended to moreover develop a long-term providers and maintenance plan and as well as an settlement for larger entry for school college students to the connected metropolis library. And create a plan to cope with the extreme turnover of teachers and administrator that will impact pupil outcomes and college custom. 


Tags: Clarksburg College,   interstate ,   merger,   stamford school,   

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