From the Superintendent
School Merger Discussion
The Board of Education held a meeting on February 15th for the school community to participate in a discussion on a possible school merger with Johnsburg Central School. There were approximately 30 in-person and 20 virtual attendees. Several questions submitted prior to the meeting, and several more asked by in-person attendees, served as a starting point for a good discussion. A running list of merger questions will be posted on the school website. Those present at the meeting expressed their support for the school board to proceed with a merger feasibility study, which the school board voted in favor to do. One meeting attendee suggested that we create a simple list of the steps involved with the merger process. See below:
SCHOOL MERGER PROCESS STEPS
√• Minerva and Johnsburg School Boards agree to learn more about school mergers. (October, 2022)
√• Minerva and Johnsburg School Boards participate in a presentation on school district reorganization
featuring representatives from the New York State Education Department. (January, 2023)
√• Minerva and Johnsburg School Boards host separate community meetings. (February, 2023)
study. (February, 2023)
- Consultant is hired to conduct a merger feasibility study. (Late Winter/Spring 2023)
- Typically, a Merger Feasibility Advisory Committee is formed to assist with the feasibility study process. The committee normally consists of an equal number of volunteers from each community and will include students, parents, school employees, community members, etc.
- A feasibility study is conducted and shared out to the school communities through multiple Merger Feasibility Advisory Committee meetings. This process typically takes several months to complete.
- Following the completion of the feasibility study, both the Minerva and Johnsburg School Boards will decide, separately, whether or not to conduct a non-binding “straw vote” to assess public support for the merger.
- If either school board decides not to conduct a straw vote, the merger process ends. If either community’s straw vote fails, the merger process will not continue.
- If both communities' straw vote passes, showing community support, the merger approval process proceeds to a second and final/binding vote - in each community.
- The second and binding vote is held, separately in each community, to determine community support for the school merger. Voters who vote in support of the merger are also asked to decide on how many board members the new board will consist of and the length of terms.
- If the second vote fails in either community, the process ends.
- If the second vote passes in both communities, the formal reorganization process begins.
NOTE: Items marked with a check have been completed.
Thank you to all of our parents who arranged time to attend the recent parent-teacher conferences. I am very happy to report that ninety-two percent of our elementary students had parents attend and fifty percent of our secondary students had parents in attendance. Thank you very much to our faculty and our kitchen staff for altering their work hours in order to make the conference times more accessible to our parents. A reminder to all parents: you are encouraged to request individual parent-teacher conferences at any time throughout the school year.
School Board Items
The next school budget workshop is scheduled for Thursday, March 9th at 6:00PM in the library. The workshop is open to the public for anyone interested in being part of the budget development process. The next school board meeting will follow the March 9th budget workshop.
March’s coffee hour is scheduled for Tuesday, March 14th at 9:30 in the cafeteria.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!