School consolidation is a study in patience

    Governor Rendell concedes his plan to merge Pennsylvania’s school districts hasn’t gotten too far.

    Governor Rendell concedes his plan to merge Pennsylvania’s school districts hasn’t gotten too far.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090424sdschools.mp3]

    When Governor Rendell suggested consolidating Pennsylvania’s school districts from 501 to 100 in February, the idea got a lot of attention.

    Rendell wanted lawmakers to form a commission to study the plan, and report back ways to make it happen.

    But the governor notes there hasn’t been much progress on that front, to-date.

    Rendell: We’ve been so busy with the economy and the budget that I haven’t had a chance to check on it. I’ve asked the legislature to study this. They should absolutely do that, and see what the commission recommends.

    The state’s facing a projected 2.3 billion dollar budget gap this year, and has until June 30 to pass next year’s spending plan.

    Republicans aren’t keen on Rendell’s consolidation idea.

    House GOP spokesman Steve Miskin says districts can decide whether or not to merge on their own, and that devoting lawmakers’ time to studying the issue would be a waste of resources.

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