INFORMATIONAL MEETING ON THE IMPACT OF A STARKSBORO WITHDRAWAL

On August 4, 2022 from 6-8 pm, the MAUSD School Board will hold an informational meeting for the residents of Bristol, Monkton and New Haven addressing the impact of a Starksboro withdrawal from the district.  This meeting is being held prior to a vote in these three towns on August 9 to approve or reject Starksboro’s request to withdraw.  

The informational meeting will be held in Bristol at Holley Hall, with satellite locations at the New Haven Town Hall and the Monkton Town Hall.  Community members can attend the meeting in their town or another location, or virtually via Zoom.  The Zoom link can be found below. 

In order to prepare communities for the vote on Starksboro’s withdrawal from MAUSD, there will be a presentation and an opportunity for residents to ask questions.  The district has determined, in short, that if the Starksboro vote is approved:

  1. Taxes will go up close to 17% for FY 2023-24 or $507 on a home assessed at $200,000 or $289 for income sensitized families.  Fewer students in the District equals higher costs per pupil which equals higher taxes.  

  1. Starksboro could become a secondary choice district meaning reduced academic offerings, reduced co-curricular offerings and reduced support for students.

  1. MAUSD most likely would be forced back into a Supervisory Union meaning reduced equity for students, reduced continuity across elementary schools, reduced staffing flexibility to meet student needs, reduced job security for staff, reduced ability to fill positions, higher overhead costs due to reduced central office efficiency, and the inability for voters to vote on centralized expenses.

All of this information, and the assumptions and formulas used to develop this information, will be shared with town voters at the August 4 meeting.  

In addition, if a merger with Addison Northwest Supervisory District (ANWSD)* is successful and Starksboro withdraws, there is less efficiency overall and the impact would be a higher tax rate or reduced support and opportunities for students. Fewer students in the District will increase expenses, therefore increasing taxes.   If Starksboro stays in the district and there is a vote for a district merger, there would likely be:

  • A more stable tax rate

  • Lower overhead cost per student

  • Stable or increased support and opportunities for students

  • Greater equity for students

  • Protection for small schools

  • Improved staff recruitment and retention

  • Towns can still withdraw from a merged district

Please be sure you are informed on the impact of your vote and plan to attend this very important meeting on August 4 from 6-8 pm.  There will be time for questions and you are encouraged to submit your questions prior to the meeting by emailing the Board Chair Dawn Griswold at [email protected].

The informational meeting will be held at Holley Hall in Bristol, and two satellite locations: New Haven Town Hall and Monkton Town Hall.  The meeting will also be held via Zoom at: 

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86384562512

Meeting ID: 863 8456 2512

Passcode: MAUSD

When is the vote?

The vote to allow Starksboro to withdraw from MAUSD will take place on Tuesday, August 9 which is the same day as Vermont state primary elections. You can request an early/absentee ballot from your town clerk by August 8.

*Note: The MAUSD/ANWSD Merger Study Committee will be sharing more detailed information about the proposed merger in the coming weeks and giving community members an opportunity to ask questions.