A study done for school districts in Idaho Falls found consolidation would cost taxpayers more, a blow to proponents of combining districts in a bid to reduce costs.
The Oregon-based Education Northwest, an education research laboratory, says consolidation of Idaho Falls School District 91 and Bonneville Joint School District 93 would have upfront costs of up to $2.4 million, while generating between $582,000 and $2.4 million in additional annual costs.
“I thought it would be cost-neutral,” District 93 Superintendent Chuck Shackett told the Idaho Falls Post-Register. “I didn’t realize it would cost more.”
There are certainly areas of school district management in which economies of scale can apply, but the evidence of, oh, the last century or so makes the case that bigger is not cheaper.