Winchester & Bluffs To Hear Consolidation Report Next Month

By Benjamin Cox on February 18, 2021 at 11:00am

Winchester and Bluffs schools may be looking at a school consolidation vote next month. Members of the Bluffs and Winchester school boards approved a contract Midwest School Consultants back in September for a feasibility study for consolidation.

Superintendent for both schools, Kevin Blankenship, told the Journal Courier this week that the consultants will present how the consolidation might look, such as which buildings would close, how students would be taken to and from school, and what elements could be restructured. Blankenship says that once the consultants’ report is finished, a joint meeting of both boards would likely be held next month to determine if consolidation is a viable option financially.

Blankenship says that no input from both communities have been heard yet. He says he would like to hear what both communities have to say before a decision is made about consolidation. Both districts last were presented with a feasibility study back in 2000, but no further steps were taken. The two districts are splitting the cost of the study, which totals about $12,500, with some of the cost of the study possibly getting reimbursed by the state.