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PICKFORD PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . BARAGA TOWNSHIP SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . ONTONAGON AREA SCHOOLS . . . BARK RIVER HARRIS SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . CHATFIELD SCHOOL . . . COVERT PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . MARION PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . VESTABURG COMMUNITY SCHOOLS . . . ST. IGNACE CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . L'ANSE AREA SCHOOLS . . . FOREST AREA COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . DETROIT PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . POTTERVILLE PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . HENRY FORD ACADEMY . . . HANCOCK PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . GENESEE SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . INKSTER CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . BUENA VISTA SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . CESAR CHAVEZ ACADEMY . . . HOUGHTON-PORTAGE TOWNSHIP SCHOOLS . . . FULTON SCHOOLS . . . WESTWOOD HEIGHTS SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . ECORSE PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . BLOOMINGDALE PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . NEGAUNEE PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . RIVERSIDE ACADEMY . . . HARTFORD PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . HURON VALLEY SCHOOLS . . . TRAVERSE CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . WATERFORD SCHOOLS. . . TROY PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . FARMINGTON PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . CHIPPEWA VALLEY SCHOOLS. . . ROCHESTER COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . WALLED LAKE CONSOLIDATED SCHOOL DISTRICT. . . WARREN CONSOLIDATED SCHOOLS. . . ANN ARBOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS. . . PLYMOUTH CANTON COMMUNITY SCHOOLS. . . LIVONIA PUBLIC SCHOOLS. . . UTICA COMMUNITY SCHOOLS . . . CONCORD ANTRIM ACADEMY . . . MARSHALL ACADEMY . . . AGBU ALEX & MARIE MANOOGIAN SCHOOL . . . WESTERN MICH ACADEMY OF ENVIRON. SCIENCE . . . BLISSFIELD COMMUNITY SCHOOLS . . . SPRINGPORT PUBLIC SCHOOLS . . . MCBAIN AGRICULTURAL SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . TAHQUAMENON AREA SCHOOLS . . . MANISTIQUE AREA SCHOOLS . . . MAYVILLE COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT . . . HOLTON PUBLIC

Why DOES Michigan have over 700 School Districts?Should it?Learning Team: Bob Balwinski, Bob Cipriano, Dan Hanrahan, Dan Schab, Joann Neuroth, Kathy Weller

the challenge
The Challenge

Governor Granholm has asked the Education Policy Fellowship Program to prepare a recommendation as to whether her next four-year agenda should include a campaign to consolidate Michigan into fewer school districts.

We’ve all taken a week’s vacation to work on this high-paying consulting job. So let’s get started . . .

our research program
Our Research Program
  • 1:15 Explore Michigan history
  • 1:30 Explore assumptions/make projections
  • 2:00 Analyze current financial/performance data
  • 2:20 Check public opinion data
  • 2:35 10 minute break--
  • 2:45 Look at a recent case study
  • 3:45 15 minute break
  • 4:00 Michigan Association of School Boards
how many districts now
How many districts now?
  • 552 Local Districts
  • 57 Intermediate Districts
  • 225 Public School Academies (Charter Schools)
historical perspective
Historical Perspective

Year# of Districts# of Pupils

1880 6,352 362,196

1915 7,337 598,159

1950 4,918 1,043,566

1965 1,227 1,917,890

how did we get so many districts
How did we get so many Districts?
  • April 27, 1827 First Public School Law
    • Education is a Public Responsibility
    • Legislative Council of Michigan Territory
    • Began the Practice of Organizing Districts Within Township
  • Townships with 50 or More Families Must Provide Schoolmaster
  • No School Could be Larger than 9 Sections
  • Desire of Families to be Close to School House
  • Local Control
    • Michigan Abhors Centralization
  • No Plan (Educators v Local Citizens)
why did the number decline
Why did The Number Decline?
  • Primary District/Secondary Districts
  • Union Schools – Formed by Two or More Graded Schools
  • 1917 Rural Agricultural School Act
  • 1944 Michigan Public Education Study Commission
      • Suggested minimum Enrollment
      • Recommended a Reorganization Commission be Named in Each County
      • Legislature Took No Action
  • School District Reorganization Act of 1964
  • Each of 60 ISD’s Submit Reorganization Plan
  • Every District Would be Part of K-12 District
  • State Committees
  • Districts With Changing Boundaries Could Vote
how did the reduction occur
How did the Reduction Occur?
  • Consolidation
  • Annexation
  • Dissolution
barriers to further reductions
Barriers to Further Reductions
  • Consolidation Requires Vote of Both Districts
  • Annexation Requires Vote of Annexed District
  • Local Control
  • No Monetary Incentives
predict what might happen to
Predict what might happen to:
  • Student achievement
  • % of overhead
  • Local sense of ownership/engagement/pride
  • Drop out rates
  • Number/variety of course offerings
  • Fund balances/fiscal stability
what does data say are there economies of scale
What does data say: Are there “Economies of Scale?”
  • One definition of “Economies of Scale” suggests that larger districts can minimize non-instructional expenses relative to those directly involved in teaching and learning.
  • The next slide shows how we divided Current Operating Expenses into those which should be maximized and those an “economy of scale” would hope to minimize.
slide14

School Finances: An Overview

Instruction

Support

Instructional Support

(includes counselors, therapists, librarians etc)

Bus/Administration

Basic Classroom

Added

(includes Special Ed)

Op/Maintenance

Adult Ed

Transportation

Community Service

Capital Outlay

Current Operating Expenses

General Fund

does data suggest other definitions of economies of scale
Does data suggest other definitions of “Economies of Scale”?
  • We examined the most recent consolidation (Wakefield – Marenisco)

Wakefield Marenisco Combined 2003-2004

2003-04 2003-04 2003-04 Percent

Instruction 1,711,611 688,045 2,399,656 70

Non-instruction 596,290 427,939 1,024,229 30

Total 2,307,901 1,115,984 3,423,885

and after consolidation
And after consolidation?

Wakefield-Maranesco 2004-200 Cost

2004-2005 Percent Reduction

Instruction 2,004,261 71 395,395

Non-instruction 836,699 29 187,560

Total 2,840,930 582,955

and how about student achievement does district size matter
And how about student achievement? Does district size matter?
  • We sorted first by SEV into wealth quartiles (to equalize comparisons)
  • Then we arranged each quartile by SIZE
  • Within each quartile, we separated PSAs (their finances are so different)
  • We compared % Instruction and MEAP scores in clusters of 18-20 schools
consolidation of michigan schools results from the 2002 state of the state survey
Consolidation of Michigan Schools – Results from the 2002 State of the State Survey
  • Lisa Ray, Research Analyst
  • David N. Plank, Co-Director

The Education Policy Center at MSU

do you favor consolidation of school districts in michigan
Do You Favor Consolidation of School Districts in Michigan?

47%

  • No Children – 53%, Children – 45%,

Children in Public Schools – 41%

2. B or better – 47%, C or better – 53%

3. Rural – 42%, Small Town – 55%,

Suburban – 51%, Urban – 49%

4. Caucasian – 49%, African American – 53%

  • Athletics Important – 51%,

Athletics Not Important – 45%

a closer look at those who initially favored consolidation
A Closer Look At Those Who Initially Favored Consolidation

What if consolidation:

  • would bring a greater mix of students into the school district?

B) meant that local citizens would have less say into how the consolidated district is run?

C) would lead to school closings?

42.6%

18.0%

18.6%

a closer look at those who initially opposed consolidation
A Closer Look At Those Who Initially Opposed Consolidation

What if consolidation:

  • would lead to more specialized programs for students?

B) would reduce administrative costs?

C) would not lead to school closings?

66.3%

60.3%

55.2%

best way for local school districts to reduce costs and spending
Consolidation

B. Contracting for services

C. Increasing class sizes

D. Reducing the curriculum

E. Sharing resources with other school districts

Best Way for Local School Districts to Reduce Costs and Spending?
policy implications
Policy Implications
  • Michigan residents are not as strongly opposed to consolidation as popular wisdom might suggest.
  • Support or opposition depends on the perceived consequences of consolidation.
  • Compared to other cost-reduction options, Michigan residents clearly prefer to have their district share resources with other districts,.
what does governance experience suggest let s ask school boards
What does governance experience suggest? Let’s ask School Boards

Anthony Derezinski

Director of Governmental Relations

Michigan Association of School Boards