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Tue, July 16

New plan holds VACTE harmless with consolidation

In July 2018, Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter talked with the Valley Academy district governing board about how a consolidation of the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union school districts might affect the career and technical education program. Arizona Sen. Sylvia Allen has drafted legislature that would not change the structural relationship between VACTE and a unified/consolidated district. VVN/Bill Helm

In July 2018, Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter talked with the Valley Academy district governing board about how a consolidation of the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union school districts might affect the career and technical education program. Arizona Sen. Sylvia Allen has drafted legislature that would not change the structural relationship between VACTE and a unified/consolidated district. VVN/Bill Helm

PHOENIX – Sen. Sylvia Allen has released a rough draft of legislation that would keep a consolidated version of the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union school districts connected to – and funded by – the Verde Valley’s voter-approved Joint Technical Education District

According to the District 6 state senator’s as-yet unnamed legislation, “the successor school district that results from that unification or consolidation shall automatically continue to participate in that career technical education district in the same manner as the former school district that was unified or consolidated,” provided that the school district or districts were “participating in a career technical education district at the time the school district was unified or consolidated.”

What this means is that should Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union merge into one district, their relationship with Valley Academy of Career and Technology Education would not change, that high school students in upper Verde Valley schools would still be eligible to take both satellite program and centralized program classes with funding coming from VACTE.

According to Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter, the bill would “allow the unified district to continue as a VACTE member district and for their taxpayers to pay the nickel tax per 100K.”

Valley Academy is governed by a five-member board with representation from Mingus Union, Cottonwood-Oak Creek, Clarkdale, Camp Verde and Jerome.

If the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union school districts merge, the Valley Academy governing board would lose one representative. Though the bill does not address the fact that the VACTE board would go from five members to four, Carter said that the matter is “probably workable.”

-- Follow Bill Helm on Twitter @BillHelm42

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