Via Bernie, this Amy Crawford story should be required reading for anybody considering education spending cuts. Wasteful political fiefdoms are the very weakest claim on the limited supply of education dollars, so before anybody goes scrapping full-day kindergarten or making kids pay to play sports, legislators should cut the service duplication fat:
Across the state, there are 500 school districts, ranging in size from mammoth Philadelphia, with about 166,000 students, to one-building rural schools with fewer than 300 in kindergarten through 12th grade.
The patchwork of districts makes little sense to Rep. Tim Mahoney, D-South Union. He is pushing a plan that would require Fayette County’s six districts to share a centralized administration, with one countywide school board and one superintendent, a move he said would cut costs.
“One bus contract,” he explained. “One food contract. You buy in bulk. If you do it this way, you still have the identities of the schools, like they’re still six school districts. “
Mahoney has secured a state grant to look at the potential impact of his plan. If the study, due this summer, shows potential savings and educational benefits, he plans to place administrative consolidation on the ballot as a referendum.
I saw Bob Freeman geek out about this stuff at a RenewLV event last year. Can we get Bob Freeman to commission a similar study for the Northampton County school districts?