Southern Berkshire School Committee to meet on single district proposal

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SHEFFIELD — Southern Berkshire Regional School District School Committee will meet on Thursday evening to discuss a recommendation that all of Berkshire County combine into one school district.

The "round-table" meeting, which begins at 6 p.m. at Eagles Loft in Sheffield, is open to the public.

The meeting will not include discussion of consolidation with the neighboring Berkshire Hills Regional School Committee. Because of a miscommunication, a story in Thursday's edition incorrectly reported both committees and superintendents would participate in the meeting and would focus on potential collaboration options or even a merger.

Merging school districts has been a hot topic in Berkshire County for years, but the debate was renewed in September when Berkshire Hills voted to withdraw from the Berkshire County Education Task Force — a group of volunteer education professionals and community leaders created in 2015 to investigate consolidation potential between the county's nine school districts. The task force recommends that schools begin work toward creating a single countywide district.

Berkshire Hills opted then to reach out to other Southern Berkshire County school districts to discuss possible collaborations.

Thursday's agenda calls for establishing a meeting schedule and discussing potential challenges and initiatives for a merger.

"We're going to talk about what's possible and what are things we'd like to do," said School Committee member Carl Stewart.

Contact Kristin Palpini at kpalpini@berkshireeagle.com and @kristinpalpini on Twitter.

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