I’ve been reading about the “Vicious Act” of 1892. That’s the law Vermont legislators passed a century ago mandating consolidation of all school districts within a town to a single district. The law was not popular.
Vermont is now dealing with a similar law that some feel is the Vicious Act of 2015 – Act 46, the school governance law that mandates further consolidation of town school districts. The legislature may have felt that consolidation makes sense. And the impact for some towns may very well be benign. But for others, it is not.
The way the law has worked to date is to transfer significant resources, through incentives, to merged districts. Many of the merged districts are in the more urban areas of the state. Rural areas help to pay for these incentives through Education Fund dollars.