Bettsville schools talk finances

BETTSVILLE -The Bettsville Local School Board of Education continued to discuss their financial future this week.

During a work session Tuesday, board president Michelle Davis said board members continued to discuss the district’s financial situation and options they are to look into for next year, including what cuts are acceptable.

Davis could not confirm what options the district is looking into or where the district is looking to make cuts.

The district is working with Barb Bechtel, fiscal consultant from the Ohio Department of Education, to make sure the district is able to make payroll, Davis said.

She said there were discussions on consolidating, but could not confirm any other information Thursday night.

The board met with staff in executive session during the work session Wednesday. No action was taken.

Bettsville is to have a community meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday to inform the public on what options the district is considering, Bettsville Superintendent Gregg Pettit had said.

The board also is to have a performance audit committee meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.

Previously, Pettit had said the district’s open enrollment numbers are down. For the 2013-14 school year, the district has had 33 students enrolled and a loss of 63 students.

In 2013, Bettsville and Old Fort Local Schools entered into an agreement to share services. Bettsville obtained the service of a Spanish teacher and both districts share the services of their building principals.

Bettsville Treasurer Roger Luhring has said sharing services has helped save the district a “considerable amount of money.”

Similarly, Old Fort is to have a community meeting at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 3 to discuss the future of the district.

Bettsville and Old Fort Local Schools discussed consolidation in 2009, but those discussions were halted. According to meeting minutes May 2011 Old Fort special session, a discussion was held between the districts’ representatives “regarding sharing services between districts before consolidation would be attempted.”

Old Fort Superintendent Jude Meyers was unable to be reached Thursday for comment.