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Residents on panel to map D-26 future

CARY – The District 26 school board Monday selected its two at-large community members for the steering committee charged with putting together a strategic plan for the district.

Richard Williams and Jill Carasso were randomly chosen by school board President Chris Spoerl.

Kathleen Adams and Kenneth Olsen also applied to be a part of the committee.

The district is spending up to $6,000 for SHR Consulting to guide development of the strategic plan outlining the district’s vision, mission and goals for the next few years.

Meetings are scheduled for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays, beginning Sept. 11 and running through Nov. 27. Meetings are not scheduled, however, for Oct. 2 and Nov. 20.

The steering committee also will include school board members, administrators, teachers, support staff, community engagement committee members, members of parent-teacher organizations and Cary District 26 Foundation board members.

Superintendent Brian Coleman also said work has begun on a consolidation feasibility study for District 26 and Fox River Grove District 3.

The study will look at curriculum, enrollment, transportation, facilities and finance. It’s expected to take three to four months to complete.

Midwest Consultants is conducting that study and next will schedule visits to facilities in both districts to talk with staff and officials, Coleman said.

The cost of the study is $15,000 and is being divided between the districts based on student enrollment. If there is no reimbursement from the state, District 26’s share will $12,300; District 3 will pay $2,700.

The study will “result in a recommendation from the consultant on the advantages/and/or disadvantages in consolidating the two districts,” Coleman said in a memo the school board.

A referendum would need to be approved by a majority of voters in both districts for consolidation to take place.

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