Kzoo RESA Receives School Consolidation Grants from State | Politics
School Consolidation Grants to Support
Efforts of Efficiency and Impact
LANSING – The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has awarded $10 million in state grants to local and intermediate school districts to help support the costs of district consolidations or a consolidation of services among school districts.
“To help develop more efficient operations of school districts, either entire district consolidations or a consolidation of their services is being recognized as a very effective strategy,” said State Superintendent Mike Flanagan. “These grants reward those districts and school leaders who have shown the vision to take on these courageous tasks.”
The state funds, initiated and approved by the Michigan Legislature and signed into law by Governor Rick Snyder, will provide seven competitive grants to districts, or multi-district consolidation efforts. The Michigan Department of Education received 51 grant applications, requesting nearly $26 million for the $10 million that was appropriated.
MDE reviewed, rated, and rewarded what was available to those applications that demonstrated the most efficient and effective impact of consolidation efforts.
The applications that garnered the highest grant amounts were complete consolidations of school districts: the Washtenaw Intermediate School District’s effort to help in the consolidation of the Willow Run and Ypsilanti school districts; and the consolidation of the Mason-Lake and Oceana intermediate school districts to form the new West Shore Educational Services District. The Mason County Eastern Schools also received a grant for its consolidation with Free Soil Community Schools.
“Entire consolidation of school districts sometimes can be controversial and emotional endeavors,” Flanagan said. “I applaud those communities that consolidated, and the education leaders in those communities, for working together and building positive coalitions to bring about these important changes.”
The Consolidation of Operations or Services Grant Awards:
Washtenaw ISD (Willow Run-Ypsilanti consolidation) $6,561,200
West Shore ESD (consolidation of two ISDs) $1,950,844
Mason County Eastern Schools (consolidation with Free Soil) $ 183,226
Charlevoix-Emmet ISD (Business Services/Software) $ 25,327
Calhoun ISD (Technology/Software System) $ 788,208
Copper Country ISD (Business Services) $ 60,567
Kalamazoo RESA (Business Services/Software) $ 430,628
All of these grant awards are conditional, pending the submission of revised and approvable project budgets by the districts.