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Virtual School

Still no deal between Greenfield schools, virtual school

Ed Berlin, chairman of the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School board of trustees.. Recorder/Paul Franz

Ed Berlin, chairman of the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School board of trustees.. Recorder/Paul Franz

GREENFIELD ­— The Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School’s contract with the Greenfield School Department is set to terminate next Saturday, and the two sides still haven’t reached agreement on a new deal.

The School Committee met in executive session for two hours on Thursday to discuss the scope of the services it provides the cyber school — “central office” tasks like superintendent duties, special education administration, data services, payroll and financial management, grant development and personnel hiring.

Committee members are trying to determine if the additional revenue is worth the extra work their staff has been putting into the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School. The virtual school trustees have asked to decrease the amount of services and the payment from 7.5 percent of revenue to 3 percent.

The School Committee left Thursday without voting one way or another. Mayor William Martin, chairman of the school board, hopes that the discussion can resume in March, but that’s only if virtual school trustees choose to postpone the contract expiration date.

Ed Berlin, chairman of the virtual school board, said that trustees will meet in executive session on Monday to discuss their options.

If the Greenfield School Committee adopted the revised contract, the virtual school board will pay just under $200,000 total by school year’s end as it continues to transition away from its parent brick-and-mortar public school department.

It’s unclear what impact the immediate change would have on budget or staffing for Greenfield schools. Martin said Thursday that he doesn’t know how exactly the revenue is used.

You can reach Chris Shores at: cshores@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 264

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