Main St., going into the 2017-18 school year in an effort to save money and accommodate declining enrollment. in Manchester, currently houses fifth through eighth graders.(Photo courtesy of Manchester Community Schools) MANCHESTER, MI - Declining enrollment and budget constraints have prompted Manchester Community Schools to repurpose its middle school building for the 2017-18 school year. The school board has approved dividing those grades between other schools for the coming school year.The Press and seven affiliated newspapers commissioned the MSU study amid a growing state and national debate about school consolidation and cost cutting.
Michigan has the nation’s fifth-highest number of school districts.Because economic crises often provoke calls for consolidation as a means of increasing government efficiency, the contemporary interest in consolidation is not surprising.However, the review of research evidence detailed in this brief suggests that a century of consolidation has already produced most of the efficiencies obtainable.Next school year, fifth and sixth graders will move to Klager Elementary School, making it a K-6 building.The seventh and eighth graders will relocate to the high school building, which will be renamed Manchester Middle School/High School.Arguments for consolidation, which merges schools or districts and centralizes their management, rest primarily on two presumed benefits: (1) fiscal efficiency and (2) higher educational quality.