Consolidating school systems

The content of the response does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U. Department of Education nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.

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District administrators hope that a successful consolidation will “be the spark for providing greater educational opportunities than ever before and achieving a new and greater shared benchmark of excellence,” according to a consolidation announcement posted on the school district website.

The district is attempting to correct years of educational inequity and find ways to close those gaps and ensure all students, regardless of race, receive a high quality education.

The Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Reference Desk is a service provided by a collaborative of the REL program, funded by the U. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES).

This response was prepared under a contract with IES, Contract ED-06-CO-0016, by REL Northwest administered by Education Northwest.

The new students came to Starkville, a diverse district with a mix of 30 percent white and 65 percent black students, from East and West Oktibbeha County Schools, which were almost entirely black.

Their schools were crumbling and had twice been taken over by the Mississippi State Board of Education for failing to provide students with an adequate education.

The brief recommends that consolidation occur on a case-by-case basis, and that state-level consolidation proposals are unlikely to lead to substantive fiscal or educational improvement.

Feasibility of School District Services Consolidation: Evaluation Report [PDF]Idaho Legislature, Office of Performance Evaluations. This report of the Idaho Legislature examined the feasibility of consolidating district services and found that consolidating three types of services—purchasing of supplies, transportation, and staff development—could yield potential savings.

Today, many of these cases have become relics of the 1960s and ’70s, with courts and the Department of Justice often doing little to nothing to check if districts have done their duty to end segregation.

When asked how many districts were making progress towards fulfilling their court orders, Deputy Assistant Attorney General Eve Hill responded, “I hope that they are all moving forward.

A frequent question to the Reference Desk, and one currently receiving increased national attention due to budget challenges, is whether consolidating school districts might result in lower overall costs for education.


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