Corbett Administration Open to School District Consolidation

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Best news I’ve heard all year:

Ron Tomalis is fond of saying that the state’s 500 school districts are not a magic number.

The state Secretary of Education indicated a willingness to discuss the possibly of consolidating some Pennsylvania school districts as a way to rescue some that are struggling financially and save money for other districts.

But any movement toward consolidation would not be easy and would not come without its drawbacks, he warned.

“Is there a magic number that should come from Harrisburg and say, ‘This is the number of school districts?’ I don’t think so,” Tomalis said. “But there is no simple answer to this issue.”

But there is a magic number. It is 67 – the number of counties in PA. The Corbett administration could simply start block-granting school district aid to county governments for all their constituent school districts. Then they could offer more money to those counties that consolidate their school districts, and less money to those that don’t.

Go check out Eric Boehm’s whole article. I’m very glad to see that the Chester-Upland situation seems to be the motivation behind this push for consolidation. That is what I have been advocating from the beginning, so it’s great to see some movement in this direction.

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