Education Specialist (EdS)
Semester of Degree Completion
The main purpose of this field study was to examine factors related to school consolidation in Lawrence County, Illinois. Two unit school districts-Community Unit School District No. 10 and No. 20-have been in operation since 1972 in southeastern Illinois. Both districts have full recognition by the Illinois State Board of Education and North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
In 1991-92, approximately 2,800 students attended kindergarten through twelfth grade in Lawrence County. However, financial considerations were the primary concerns of the schools/ operations. Due to revenue losses in farmland reassessment, property taxes and general state aid, Lawrence County administrators examined various methods to correct budgetary concerns. The researcher investigated consolidation as a cost-saving measure for Lawrence County citizens.
Six major aspects of school operation were reviewed. Facilities, enrollment, curriculum, finances, transportation, and staff were considered important issues of consolidation. Interviews and reviews of research were the primary sources of information.
It was anticipated that reorganization would be beneficial to the educational process of Lawrence County students. However, there was no evidence to support the benefits of consolidation. The facilities used were maintained and projected enrollment was steady. Cooperative sharing of academic and vocational courses was evident. Both districts balanced their budgets. The need for additional transportation and increased staff would be a result of consolidation.
The final recommendation was to disregard consolidation in Lawrence County, Illinois. There was no advantage to the total educational program of the county students.
Phipps, Judith J., "Consolidation Study for Illinois Community Unit School Districts No. 10 and No. 20" (1992). Masters Theses. 2165.