Chatham, New Lebanon will Explore Shared Services, Not Merger
After two joint board meetings and much research into the issue, Chatham CSD and New Lebanon CSD have decided not to pursue a merger study at this time. However, both districts agreed that there was a need to consider shared resources and services as a way to achieve savings and provide increased program opportunities for students.
“Through this process, we learned that, depending on the specific circumstances of the districts involved, mergers are not always financially or programmatically helpful. Both districts decided that exploring shared services, not a merger, would be in our best interests at this time. We also committed to continuing to work toward identifying which solutions will best meet our needs in the long term,” said superintendent Cheryl Nuciforo.
Over the next few months, Chatham and New Lebanon will explore short and long term options for combined programs and services. As a part of this effort the superintendents will develop some suggestions for consideration by their Boards. The Boards will work together to identify possibilities for longer term investigation, possibly approaching Questar III BOCES for support. They will also conduct a financial analysis to determine the financial impact a merger would have in order to determine if merger should be considered in the future.
“Both Chatham and New Lebanon are small schools experiencing a decline in enrollment. By sharing certain resources, we can provide learning opportunities for students that we would not be able to support independently,” added Nuciforo.
The two boards will meet together again on May 9th, 7 p.m. in the New Lebanon JR/SR High School, 14665 State Route 22, New Lebanon, NY 12125.