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Watchung Hills Regional High School Watchung Hills Regional High School

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Rowan University and Watchung Hills

Shared Services/Regionalization Feasibility Study Announcement

April 2024

 

With full funding from the State of New Jersey, a highly experienced Rowan University team, led by former Warren Township Board of Education member Kathleen Helewa, will be conducting a shared services/regionalization study covering the Watchung Hills Regional, Watchung Borough, Warren Township, Long Hill Township and Green Brook Township school districts.


The Watchung Hills Regional and Watchung Borough school districts applied for the $135,000 grant under the state’s School Regionalization Efficiency Program, which funds the full cost of studies with no cost to school districts or property taxpayers.


The study will be conducted over the next year with input from an advisory committee that includes representatives from all five school boards – Watchung Hills Regional, Watchung, Warren Township, Long Hill, and Green Brook – along with school administrators and municipal officials.


The study will analyze educational programs for students from preschool through high school within the five districts, including curriculum coordination, special education programming, and transportation costs; provide a demographic analysis of future enrollment for the five districts; forecast state aid based on those enrollment projections, and evaluate future budget challenges.


Based on this analysis, the study will provide recommendations for educational enhancements and potential cost savings through various options, ranging from expansion of shared services in specific areas to full PreK12 regionalization.


The Rowan School Regionalization Institute team includes Helewa, a Warren resident who previously served as senior manager of field services for the New Jersey School Boards Association; former state Education Commissioner Lucille Davy; G. Kennedy Greene, former president of the New Jersey Association of School Administrators; Mark Magyar, a principal author of the 2022 school regionalization legislation; and school finance consultant Brian Falkowski.


There will be ongoing opportunities for your valuable community involvement throughout the study process, beginning with a virtual informational session on Monday, May 20, at 7 p.m. A meeting recording will be posted on district websites following the session.

Please register for the session via the following link: https://events.teams.microsoft.com/event/9e29a8a9-f77d-4ca6-934d-a49efac13aa8@7800e121-4867-4c80-acc0-22bbbc8a2c14