ConVal announces plans to consolidate

Published: 05-18-2023 1:32 PM

The ConVal School District announced plans to consolidate and reconfigure its 11 schools Wednesday, citing school capacity that “far exceeds our current enrollment” and the unlikelihood of significant increases in the number of students.

ConVal is home to eight elementary schools, two middle schools and a high school, with capacity for 3,530 students as of November, but according to a press release from the district, enrollment has been declining steadily to the current 1,993 students, and “the latest demographic projections suggest a very small growth in enrollments over the next decade.”

The ConVal School Board has formed the Strategic Organization Committee (SOC) to begin the review process, and the district will choose an outside organization that has worked with other school districts and states on consolidation and reconfiguration. After issuing a Request for Information, the district has selected three organizations to receive its Request for Proposals and will then select an organization. The committee is scheduled to meet Friday at 1 p.m. in the Finch Room of the SAU office.

Once the district selects and organization, the process is expected to take about six months. Any change in the number of elementary schools will require a two-thirds public vote to amend the district’s Articles of Agreement.

According to the district release, “The key to this process will be community engagement. We will have as involved partners in our committee: community members, parents and students, Select Board members, School Board members, ConVal district administration, teachers and staff.”

The Strategic Organization Committee will be holding community forums and community meetings to share, discuss and receive input, and the district will produce a report detailing the committee’s work and proposals.