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Lamoine RSU 24 Withdrawal Committee

May 28, 2013 Meeting Minutes (Draft, Subject to Correction)

Present: B. Jones, G. MacFarland, G. Donaldson

Absent: D. Stewart

  1. Chairperson Jones called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m.
  2. Lamoine Education Planning Committee

The committee discussed its recommendations to the Board of Selectmen regarding gathering information, calculating costs, and informing the public about the vote to withdraw from RSU 24. The Withdrawal Committee's responsibility will end with the final approval of the Withdrawal Agreement by the Commissioner of Education. The committee agreed that the committee to be appointed by the Select Board needed to focus not just on being “a budget committee” but on the educational and administrative choices facing the town. Suggestions were made to call the committee the “Educational Development” committee or the “Lamoine Educational Future” committee. Gary indicated that there were several names already on a list of citizens who would serve on this committee. Brett emphasized the importance of drawing on the knowledge and expertise of the members of the Withdrawal Committee.

Ideas generated for the committee included (as drafted by Gordon afterward):

Purpose: to help Lamoine citizens evaluate educational choices for the town presented by the vote to withdraw from RSU 24.

Tasks:

  1. gather information on functions and costs relating to:
    1. operation of Lamoine Consolidated School to serve the needs of Lamoine famiies and students.
    2. high school choices to serve the needs of Lamoine families and students
    3. services provided to (a) and (b) by a school district office and/or by collaborating with other towns or districts (administration and business management, special education, food service, transportation, educational technology, curriculum and assessment, facilities management).

Summer 2013

    1. share information with Lamoine citizens in writing and in public discussions that allow the town to evaluate the following options:
      1. Lamoine as a stand-alone school district
      2. Lamoine as a partner in a school district with Hancock, Ellsworth, and Otis
      3. Contracting with RSU 24 for certain services (listed in 1c)
      4. Lamoine remaining a member of RSU 24

September 1 – November 5

These activities will lead up to the Select Board conducting a public hearing on the Withdrawal Vote at least 10 days prior to the vote (expected to be November 5)

Recommended Membership:

Lamoine citizens who are knowledgeable about the school, educational programs, and the costs associated with them and who have the time and commitment to lead the town in an objective examination of our choices.

Important Note: Costs for all the Options above can only be estimated. If the town votes to withdraw from RSU 24, final budget decisions can only be made by the New Lamoine School Committee and the Lamoine Town Meeting. Final costs of leaving the RSU will not be known until July 2014. (See Withdrawal Agreement.)

Gordon volunteered to draft this information into a memorandum to the Select Board and circulate the draft to the committee in the next day. (see attached final memorandum)

  1. Approval of final Withdrawal Agreement and submission to Commissioner.

The committee reviewed the revised Withdrawal Agreement and a draft letter to the Commissioner of Education indicating that five editorial changes had been made to the final agreement, requesting final approval, and requesting that November 5, 2013 be set as the date of the withdrawal vote in Lamoine. Donaldson moved (second Jones) to approve the revised Withdrawal and submit it and the revised letter to the Commissioner of Education. Vote: 3-0 in favor of the motion.

Respectfully submitted,

Gordon Donaldson, Interim Secretary

Attachments:

Memorandum to Lamoine Board of Selectmen

Letter to Stephen L. Bowen, Commissioner, Maine Department of Education