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Schools explore idea of service consolidation
Written by Mark Lineberger   
Thursday, 19 May 2011 00:00

The Camp Verde Unified School District is continuing to look at ways to potentially consolidate services with other school districts in an effort to find cost-saving measures.

The school board agreed to allow Superintendent Dan Brown and Beaver Creek School Principal and Superintendent Karin Ward to looking into possibly sharing a Camp Verde staff member to handle payroll responsibilities for both districts at their May 10 meeting.

Three years ago, Beaver Creek School lost its payroll employee, Ward said, and took the loss as an opportunity to diversify.

Beaver Creek started working with the Sedona-Oak Creek School District to take over some of the school’s payroll duties, Ward said, but recent cuts in Sedona put an end to that arrangement. The school also worked with Sedona to share special education and other human resources, possibilities she wouldn’t mind exploring with Camp Verde.

Ward said she was shopping this proposal around to different districts in the Verde Valley, but felt Camp Verde would be a particularly good match.

“This seems right,” Ward said. “I look forward to working with Camp Verde, our next-door neighbors.”

Ward said that the payroll employee at Camp Verde would be responsible for handling around 50 to 60 staff members at Beaver Creek.

Board member Helen Freeman said while she wasn’t opposed to the idea, she didn’t want to put too much of a strain on any particular employee.

“My only concern is to make sure we’re not overburdening our guy,” Freeman said.

Brown and Ward will now look into how exactly this proposal would work before bringing something more concrete back to the board.

An agreement with Beaver Creek is not the only potential shared services arrangement  Camp Verde is looking into.

Last month, representatives from the Mingus Union High School District came before the board to propose the possibility of sharing everything from maintenance equipment, transportation services and maybe even teaching staff.

The board was in no rush to jump headlong into an agreement with Mingus, but authorized Brown to start looking into some concrete numbers about potential savings.

Mingus Union High School District Superintendent Tim Foist argued the financial future of public school funding isn’t looking to improve anytime soon, and consolidation would help keep Camp Verde and Mingus ahead of the curve.

 

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