Patrons of the Exira and Elk Horn-Kimballton Community School Districts have a chance to voice their concerns and ask questions about a potential reorganization of the Exira-EHK School District during meetings to be held tonight (Tuesday, Nov. 20th) in Exira, and next Thursday, in Elk Horn. Exira-EHK Superintendent Dr. Dean Schnoes, says the districts have been Whole Grade Sharing for the past couple of years, and using each other’s resources to save costs, but additional opportunities for cost savings will soon be going away.
He says on June 30th, 2014, supplemental funds the districts receive for Whole Grade Sharing, “Goes away.” Schnoes said the next available “perk” for the districts, if they consolidate, is a lower tax rate per thousand, for three years. The kicker is, the districts have to reorganize.
The meeting tonight at Exira in the Middle School Lunchroom at 7 o’clock, and at the same time November 29th in the EHK High School Lunchroom, is designed to gain input and guidance on what the districts need to do in order to make reorganization and consolidation possible. Schnoes says questions from the public are important, so he can find answers to those questions – if they don’t already have them – from the Department of Education, and others. He says Directors from the Green Hills and Heartland Area Education Agencies (AEA) will be at a joint meeting next Monday night, to explain the AEA’s role in the process.
The meetings are being facilitated to light a fire under the communities to get serious about the effort to reorganize, and Schnoes says he’s the temporary “Ignitor” for the cause. He says the districts have been working well together in the past, and if patrons want a tax break, they need to attend the meetings, ask questions, and work on the continuation of efforts to provide a “solid education for students,” by seeing the reorganization and consolidation process through.