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Fort Edward, South Glens Falls schools to hire merger study consultant

Fort Edward, South Glens Falls schools to hire merger study consultant

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FORT EDWARD — The Fort Edward and South Glens Falls school boards are set to appoint a consultant to complete a full study of merging their districts at their respective meetings on Monday.

The boards have selected Castallo & Silky to conduct the study. Its purpose will be to gather information about the potential staffing and financial effects of the South Glens Falls Central School District annexing the Fort Edward Union Free School District. It will explore options for building and classroom configurations, gather data on academic and extracurricular programs and calculate potential savings from a merger, according to a news release.

Castallo & Silky conducted the preliminary study. 

The consultant is expected to present the completed study to both districts in the next 12 to 18 months. If both school boards decide to move forward with a vote by their respective community members, this would most likely take place at some time in the fall of 2021 or winter of 2022. The merger cannot occur until both communities approve it through public votes.

In the next month, the districts will form a joint advisory committee of South Glens Falls and Fort Edward staff and community members. The committee will meet to review the consultant’s findings. Any information received will be shared with the public.

Fort Edward has been grappling with financial issues. Its budget was defeated by voters for the second time last month. The school board will approve a list of staff cuts at Monday's meeting, which will be held at 5:30 p.m. virtually. 

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