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Most commendable

To the Editor:

I want to commend the administration and school board members of Fox River Grove District 3 and Cary District 26 for holding a very informative meeting Dec. 2 at Cary Junior High. The topic was the feasibility of consolidation of the two elementary school districts.

What is most commendable and is certainly something from which both our state and federal legislatures can learn was the level of professionalism and willingness to work together that all members brought to the table. The fact that both districts willingly commissioned a formal analysis of the districts and the question of consolidation is extraordinary in these times of opposition and division.

It was apparent after the authors of the study presented their findings that board members from both districts had done their homework, even having had only 24 hours to review the 200-plus page study before the meeting. The questions board members asked of the authors were very insightful.

While the recommendation from the study was to not consolidate the two districts, a Cary board member did bring up the possibility of re-examining the consolidation issue in the future, when there would be changes in staffing costs due to the number of retiring educators in the district.

There are many variables to examine when considering consolidation of school districts: cost savings, impact on property tax rates, equalization of salary schedules, curriculum alignment and equalization of course offerings to students. My hope is that there will also be consideration of how to allow for art, music and a variety of enrichment activities for all the students in McHenry County.

Leslie Schermerhorn

McHenry County regional superintendent of schools

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