SAD 44 makes counterproposal to Andover school withdrawal panel
SAD 44 has responded with a counterproposal to Andover’s proposed agreement to potentially withdraw from the school district.
The town, which has approximately 100 students, prepared an agreement last month and presented to SAD 44. Andover currently plans to vote this spring on whether or not to withdraw, effective July 1 of this year.
But at the Jan. 14 School Board meeting, district lawyer Bill Stockmeyer outlined many points in the Andover proposal that he said would be unfavorable financially and educationally for SAD 44. (See Jan. 17 Citizen.)
A committee of the board worked with Stockmeyer last week to craft a counterproposal. At Monday’s SAD 44 School Board meeting, Supt. Dave Murphy outlined the district’s counter proposal.
Among the proposed changes to the Andover plan:
1. The effective date of withdrawal would be moved ahead by a year to 2014, because July 1 of this year would not allow enough time for SAD 44 to prepare its budget. SAD 44 would need to have the withdrawal decided by April 1 of this year. If Andover wishes to stay with the 2013 timeline, SAD 44 asks for “milestone dates” to show how the parties will be able to accomplish the steps required.
2. Andover middle and high school students would be tuitioned exclusively to SAD 44 for at least 10 years (with exceptions for superintendent agreements and special education), to protect district taxpayers and education, rather than allowing Andover to make no commitment on tuitioning its students.
3. Andover would be responsible for all special education costs for Andover resident students, rather than SAD 44 paying for those who would be tuitioned to the district.
4. Andover could have two SAD 44 busses rather than the four requested.
5. Andover would be required to fulfill its share of existing SAD 44 debt obligations, rather than leaving without continuing them, as proposed.
6. SAD 44 would pay Andover 6.04 percent of the unencumbered general fund balance instead of the 10.07 percent proposed, and Andover would not recoup any amounts expended at Telstar. And SAD 44 would pay Andover 6.04 percent of the capital reserve fund, if and only if the district proposed to spend it on a school other than Telstar.
The counterproposal also acknowledged the approval of some provisions requested by Andover.
The counterproposal was sent to the Andover Withdrawal Committee’s attorneys last Friday, Murphy said. Andover recently received a 90-day extension from the Maine Department of Education on its allotted time to submit a plan to the DOE, which must approve it.
The new deadline is April 20.
In other business Monday, the board voted 13-1 to extend Murphy’s contract another year. Andover director Tim Akers was opposed.
The board also changed a March 21 workshop day to March 18 so staff may attend a workshop in RSU 10.
Murphy informed the board that Title I educational technician Heather Hayward has resigned.
Directors will meet next Monday for student disciplinary hearings.