School and school district consolidation is always a contentious issue. A new analysis (pdf) from Deloitte Research argues that consolidating services, not schools and districts, may be a more cost-efficient solution. (Summary here). Some of this happens now with ESA’s (also called BOCES, which though cited, particularly NY’s, get short shrift overall in this report) but the report argues for more activity in this area.
NCLB is obviously causing a movement of decisionmaking away from school districts and toward states and finance litigation is doing the same. Service aggregation should be less controversial because it’s voluntary and more about add-ons than core activities but it does speak to the same trends and evolution.