ORANGE, MA — The Orange Elementary, Ralph C. Mahar Regional and Petersham Center school districts will be able to examine regionalization with the help of $53,000 from the state.
They will be among the eight school districts and 38 municipalities in Massachusetts to benefit from more than $850,000 in Community Compact Cabinet grants, the Baker-Polito administration announced recently.
School Superintendent Tari N. Thomas said cost-saving measures are the most attractive aspect of regionalization. She explained the Orange Elementary, Petersham Center and Ralph C. Mahar school committees — the three she oversees — previously authorized her to investigate ways to secure financing to explore regionalization. The Mahar Regional School District will be the grant’s fiscal agent. Thomas said she has received an award letter, grant agreement and contract from the state and, once all necessary documents are signed and returned, the district will be eligible to receive the money.
Thomas said regionalization could cut down on costs through transportation reimbursement and improved efficiency. She explained the Orange Elementary and Petersham Center school districts do not get transportation reimbursement from the state because they are not regionalized.