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News of Otsego County

middle school

As ‘Merger Mondays’ end, Tuesday decision looms for Schenevus, Worcester

As ‘Merger Mondays’ end,
Tuesday decision looms
for Schenevus, Worcester

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

The last of the Merger Mondays took place Monday, June 14, ahead of Tuesday’s board vote.

The superintendents of Worcester and Schenevus central schools acknowledged the growing pains of a merger, but also argued its perceived importance to a group of about 15 attendees.

Some of the guests included Assemblyman Brian Miller, and Jeff Bishop, communications director for state Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-Schenevus, who is an SCS graduate.

Miller expressed mostly neutrality for the upcoming vote and said he was there to “show support for whichever way the communities decide to go.”

Oberacker was unable to attend because he was at a parade in Unadilla, a cause of some criticism among those who attended, but Bishop said Oberacker was closely following the developments on the potential merger.

If the vote is approved, there will be a Sept. 22, straw poll followed by a Dec. 3, binding referendum.

If the merger is approved the combined Board of Education would increase from five to seven seats. There also will be state financial incentives for the merger, which BOE representatives say will be used to improve educational opportunities and provide funds to a reserve, while also maintaining the same staff only eliminating positions through attrition, which they say will save $690,000.

Class size will be 22 students or lower.

Much of the merger rationale is based on a study conducted prior to the pandemic, which referenced a declining enrollment for both schools, a problem which in a merged district would be resolved with access to more academics and athletics.

Any additional cost for transportation they say will be minimal.

Anything related to mascots, school colors and team names would be student driven, officials said.

“This is emotional for a lot of people. … We do realize that and recognize that, but we have to do what’s best for our kids and everything in the study shows its best for our kids,” Carlin said.

Miller diverted from his original stance of neutrality briefly to posit about the merger.

“It’s to benefit our children and make our area truly prosper. … Things are really getting tough,” Miller said, referencing state funding. “A merger is really the best thing we can do.”

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for THURSDAY, DEC. 1
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for THURSDAY, DEC. 1

Light The Oneonta Christmas Tree

14-19eventspage

To Learn How You Can Help Area Families This Holiday Season CLICK HERE.

ONEONTA TREE LIGHTING – 5-8 p.m. Join us for the lighting of the Christmas Tree. There will be caroling, shops, warm drinks, an ugly sweater contestwith winners announced just before the lighting, Horsedrawn wagon rides, and visits with Santa. Muller Plaza, Oneonta.Info, call (607)432-2941 or email detinationoneonta@gmail.com

SCHOOL PLAY – 7 p.m. 7/8th grade. Milford Central School, 42 W. Main St., Milford. Info, web.milfordcentral.org

4-H EARN-AN-ANIMAL – Applications available. Gives youth the opportunity to purchase, raise, and show an animal. Info, cceschoharie-otsego.org/events/2016/12/01/4-h-earn-an-animal-program-2017-applications-available

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