Northern New York Newspapers
NNY Business
NNY Living
Fri., Oct. 9
Serving the communities of Jefferson, St. Lawrence and Lewis counties, New York
In print daily. Online always.

Hammond and Morristown talk sharing services


HAMMOND – No decisions were made during Tuesday’s joint-work session as Hammond and Morristown brainstormed ideas for shared services that could postpone financial insolvency for both districts.

Board members from both districts discussed sharing advance placement classes, sports teams, alternative special education programs, teachers, an IT director and Committee on Special Education chairperson during the hour-long work session.

“I think it was a healthy conversation,” Morristown Superintendent David J. Glover said after the meeting. “We’re all in the same boat in terms with the funding we get from the state. The gap elimination adjustment wreaks havoc on our overall budget and what we can offer to the kids. Until we get Albany to get that fixed and rectify that, that’s a problem. We have to find ways that make education better for kids in terms of student achievement.”

The two districts already share several services and programs. The districts share a BOCES bus run, summer school and transportation with Morristown, alternate pickup of government foods, and seven Morristown students are placed in Hammond Central School’s special education program.

Mr. Glover said he is very open seeing more course

offerings for those students at risk of dropping out of school.

“A lot of the things we discussed were good,” Mr. Glover said. “Personally, for me, I am interested in seeing what we can come up with in terms of alternative education gap, where we save kids who are at risk for dropping out can become graduates. That’s something that I have been involved with throughout my career – and is very near and dear to my heart.”

Sharing services could also provide new opportunities for students, board members said.

“Neither of us offer French and our Spanish offerings are not what they could be,” Morristown board member Mary Anne Bailey said. “We could offer French for a college credit or try to create a French program for our students or even look at a different language altogether. I think any student who works outside of the area might find those skills make them more marketable.

“I think what joins our two communities is that we want kids to have more offerings in our schools,” Mrs. Bailey said.

But while the districts were open to sharing multiple services, the boards said they will not be discussing a merger when they meet again in January.

“That’s not a direction we {Morristown and Hammond] want to go in right now,” Hammond Board President Timothy W. Pitcher said.

Mr. Pitcher said Hammond has received inquiries to merge from both Morristown and Alexandria Bay.

“It’s worth a phone call to see what their [Alexandria Bay’s] feelings are,” Mr. Pitcher said. “We haven’t made our minds up on anything yet.”

Representatives from both districts will be attending a forum sponsored by Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES on shared superintendents on Dec. 5.

“Our main objective is to share services first and a superintendent down the road – that’s always a possibility when we get more information,” Mr. Pitcher said.

The two school boards will meet next year when more data - including enrollment, class sizes, teachers’ contracts, and schedules – can be collected and presented by the districts superintendents, Mr. Pitcher said.

Commenting rules:
  1. Stick to the topic of the article/letter/editorial.
  2. When responding to issues raised by other commenters, do not engage in personal attacks or name-calling.
  3. Comments that include profanity/obscenities or are libelous in nature will be removed without warning.
Violators' commenting privileges may be revoked indefinitely. By commenting you agree to our full Terms of Use.
Syracuse Football Tickets Giveaway
Connect with Us
WDT News FeedsWDT on FacebookWDT on TwitterWDT on InstagramWDT for iOS: iPad, iPhone, and iPod touchWDT for Android
Showcase of Homes
Showcase of Homes