Senate approves Act 46 school district merger delays

Published: Mar. 28, 2019 at 11:37 AM EDT
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The Vermont Senate has approved a bill that would delay the forced merger of some school districts under Act 46.

The bill approved Wednesday modifies the version approved by the House last month by, among other things, giving districts a one-year extension only if they cooperate by creating unified school boards. The House's version allowed less prepared districts to get a one-year delay. However, it called for about half of the dozens of districts in question to merge by July.

The two versions of the bill will need to be reconciled by a conference committee.

The Vermont Agency of Education has opposed any delay in the mergers. Gov. Phil Scott, R-Vermont, has not yet indicated if he will support such a measure.

A judge this month ruled against an injunction request by over 30 school boards asking that the case be delayed while their lawsuit moves forward.