Rural schools seek grant for shared services

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Article Author: Diane Broncaccio
Publication Name: Greenfield Recorder
Article Date: 7/27/2017
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BUCKLAND — A common problem for small, rural school districts is that professional services may be needed for a fraction of the time that bigger school systems require.This means small schools have to find qualified personnel willing to take on part-time jobs for lower pay and benefits. But what if several small school systems could share the services of a full-time superintendent, business manager or bookkeeper?

The Massachusetts Rural Schools Coalition would like to form an online platform that lets school districts share services, creating an economy of scale and saving money. The coalition is calling this online platform the “Massachusetts Rural Public Schools Shared Services Center,” and the group will be applying to the state for a grant to start a pilot project online.

One goal is to set up a website where rural public schools could share information about both “excess service capacity” and “services needed.”

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