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30-May-2017 21:13

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” in the June 2002 issue of : “Sizeable potential cost savings may exist by moving from a very small district …

to a district with 2,000 to 4,000 pupils, both in instructional and administrative costs.”These studies estimate economies of size across all school districts and therefore do not look directly at the cost impact of consolidation.

Expected Savings The main justification for school district consolidation has long been that it is a way to cut costs.

These cost savings arise, the argument goes, because the provision of education is characterized by economies of size, which exist whenever the cost of education per pupil declines as the number of pupils goes up.

Third, larger districts may be able to employ more specialized teachers, putting them in a better position to provide the wide range of courses required by state accountability systems and expected today by students and parents.

Finally, teachers in larger districts have more colleagues on which to draw for advice and discussion, interactions that presumably lead to improved effectiveness.

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To put it another way, economies of size exist if spending on education per pupil declines as the number of pupils goes up, controlling for school district performance.

Third, administrators and teachers may have a more positive attitude toward work in smaller schools, which tend to have more flexible rules and procedures.

Finally, students may be more motivated and parents may find it more comfortable to interact with teachers in smaller districts, which tend to have a greater community feel.

During this period, 12 pairs of these districts consolidated.

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These consolidating districts had enrollments ranging from 250 to 1,990.In many cases, however, state aid policies concerning consolidation are contradictory.In fact, about a third of the states, including some that offer consolidation bonuses, use operating aid formulas that compensate school districts for sparsity (low population density) or for small scale and thereby discourage consolidation, according to Yao Huang, a contributor to . Some recent research provides guidance for superintendents and school leaders, especially those facing consolidation.Because consolidation creates larger school districts, it results in lower costs per pupil whenever economies of size exist.

Arguments for consolidation, which merges schools or districts and centralizes their management, rest primarily on two presumed benefits 1 fiscal efficiency and 2 higher educational… continue reading »

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School consolidation continues to be a topic of great concern for many small rural school and districts. While advocates for consolidation commonly cite fiscal imperatives based upon… continue reading »

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IssuesPA Takes a Look at the Cost-Effectiveness of Consolidating Pennsylvania School Districts. A recent Standard & Poor’s study found that consolidating smaller school districts within a… continue reading »

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School district merger study in the works to. for a study on the pros and cons of consolidating school districts. Pennsylvania merged districts.… continue reading »

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