Press-Republican

Local News

June 24, 2013

City School approves shared-services, building-use studies

Plattsburgh, Beekmantown districts will look at ways to share services

PLATTSBURGH — Plattsburgh City School will undergo a shared-services study with Beekmantown Central School and will also review its own buildings.

At a recent meeting, the City School Board voted unanimously in favor of entering into a joint contract with Beekmantown to have the education consulting firm Castallo and Silky investigate potential areas of collaboration between the districts.

Beekmantown School Board signed on to participate in the study, which is expected to begin this summer, at a meeting earlier this month.

The process will take about six months to complete and will cost $20,000, plus reimbursement of consultant expenses, all of which the districts will split.

BUILDING STUDY OK’D

In addition, the City School has voted to hire the same firm, based in Syracuse, to examine the use of district buildings, including Momot, Bailey Avenue and Oak Street elementary schools, Stafford Middle School, Plattsburgh High School and the Duken Administration Building.

For this study, which will cost $25,000 and is also expected to begin this summer, consultants will assess areas such as the long-term maintenance needs of facilities and how buildings might be best utilized for cost effectiveness, as well as future enrollment projections.

CITIZENS PANEL

A citizen advisory committee will be formed and will work closely with the consultants through the process.

“The consultants could gather the data, they could provide their perspective of what goes on in other communities, but you need to have the community involved in order to be able to handle the flow of information; otherwise, you will deal with rumor,” board member Fred Wachtmeister told meeting attendees before the board voted in favor of moving forward with the study.

SCHOOL CLOSURES

While Wachtmeister said he supported the endeavor, he noted that he would not support closing one of the district’s neighborhood schools, should that ever be proposed.

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