Would consolidating all York County schools save big?

YORK, Pa. (WHTM) – Lawmakers are dabbling with the idea of consolidating all of York County’s 15 school districts to cut costs.

A study collected data from the 2012-2013 school year to see what impact consolidation would have on property taxes and administrative costs.

The study was based on current statistics and conducted by the Independent Fiscal Office, a non-partisan group that forecasts the future; in this case, the future of the 15 school districts within York County.

Keep in mind, each district has their own administrations and superintendents who make six figures.

“But when you are looking at total budgets, $589 million for those 15 school districts, $20 million is just a small chunk of that overall budget,” said Representative Seth Grove (R-York).

County lawmakers were presented with the findings inside of the York County School of Technology.  It concludes that any administrative savings would be drastically offset, mainly because a consolidated district would qualify for less state funding.

“I think it reflected the realities. You need to do more than just administrative costs. You have to look at pension reform, mandate relief school funding changes at the state level,” Grove said.

The study was proposed last year by Republicans. Democratic state Rep. Kevin Schreiber said the data is valuable.

“There are also some things we can continue to do amongst our districts,” Schreiber said. “Let’s get to a common calendar, let’s order the same books, same school supplies. I mean, those are things that can be done in short order with little pain and without legislation.”

The West Shore School District was not included in this study because only part of it stretches into York County.


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