UPDATE: Milton's Consolidated Elementary will stay open, for now - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Milton's Consolidated Elementary will stay open, for now

By Brock Bergey - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

UPDATE (WKOW) -- The Milton School Board approved the district's preliminary budget Monday night. It includes $760,000 in cuts, but does not include the closing of Consolidated Elementary.

On a 5 to 2 vote, the board agreed with the proposed money-saving recommendations from the administration, which keeps all Milton schools open in 2010-11.

About 75 people turned out to Monday's meeting at Milton High School. Most were there in support of Consolidated Elementary, a rural school with about 90 students in grades K - 3.

Board member Al Roehl was very adamant about shutting down the neighborhood school. He says the district has other classrooms open in the district, that could accommodate Consolidated's current student population.

Superintendent Bernard Nikolay says enrollment numbers change year-to-year and cautioned against assuming the district would have enough classroom space, district wide, down-the-road.

One woman paying close attention during the board meeting was Deena Olson, the secretary at Consolidated. If the school were to close, she says she'd be out of a job.

"I don't know what I would do," Olson told 27 News at the meeting.

The news is not all good out of Milton. The board voted to cut $110,000 from its custodial budget, which could include two full time positions. Also, $200,000 will come from less spending on technology. Another $100,000 will come from savings in each building's spending budget.

Superintendent Nikolay hopes to continue to operate all the schools, in the district, well into the future, but says with the current state funding formula and rising costs, this issue is likely far from over.


MILTON (WKOW) -- Parents in Milton can breathe a sigh of relief tonight. The Milton School Board voted 5 to 2 to keep Consolidated Elementary open, at least for another year.

Brock Bergey will have the details tonight on 27 News at 10.


MILTON (WKOW) --- School board members in Milton will meet Monday night to discuss the district's projected $760,000 budget gap. 

The board has considered closing Consolidated Elementary, a rural school serving about 90 students in grades K-3.

Previous estimates put the savings of closing Consolidated at around $600,000. Now, revised figures put that number more like $181,000, according to school leaders.

The reason for such a difference? The first estimate included the layoffs of four teachers. A couple weeks ago, however, the district learned of a retirement and leave of absence that would leave two teachings positions unfilled.

Parents in the Consolidated neighborhood say no amount of money can replace quality in the classroom.

The board could take action tonight at its meeting. It starts at 6:30 p.m. in the Milton High School Library. Public comments will be allowed.

27 News is attending the board meeting. We'll have updates for you on wkow.com and tonight at 10.


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