But others point out that merging districts wouldn’t necessarily be so smooth.
In Huntington Beach, the mergers Harper proposes could cost a newly formed district millions of dollars in higher teacher pay and benefits, as well as state funding, said Wendy Benkert, assistant superintendent of business services for the Orange County Department of Education.
“This is the real big expense.” Within the next few weeks, Harper plans to introduce his legislation that will first request a study be conducted on the potential unification of California school districts, Harper’s legislative director Madeleine Cooper said Wednesday.
The next step would be to implement the unification incentives.
Generally speaking, this consolidation consisted of bringing multiple small school districts together under a single set of administrators.
Sometimes, but not always, individual schools were closed in the process.
While New Jersey has already merged several school districts, it still has some 545 of them, more than many other states, even states with larger populations.
What’s more, a remarkable 144 of New Jersey’s districts are made up of only one school.
According to Eells, if that school were to join with a couple of other K-6s, a K-8 and maybe even a high school, the schools could eliminate duplicative administrative jobs, merge administrative tasks like payroll, and purchase commodities at lower rates thanks to the benefits of buying in bulk.However, while the literature on consolidation may not provide a direct road map for making decisions, it does provide a useful overview of issues, together with estimates of cost savings and cautions for those going forward with consolidation.Here is a summary of the major findings from the literature: Here is some of the most recent and publicly available research.Kathy Rapp, R-Warren, whose district covers vast rural areas of northwest Pennsylvania."I know that there are pros and cons to consolidation but at the end of the day it is a savings to the taxpayers in the county and certainly when we're looking at declining populations and maybe other excessive expenditures, I think this a good idea," Rapp said.The last time Pennsylvania merged districts statewide was in the 1960s.New Jersey’s auditor is hardly alone in his thinking.