REGION 16 — The Region 16 Board of Education is searching for a provider to run a before and afterschool program at the new Prospect Elementary School when it opens next fall.
The board, which oversees schools in Beacon Falls and Prospect, approved issuing a request for proposals for the program at its Oct. 22 meeting. The motion was approved 5-1. Vice Chair Priscilla Cretella voted against the motion. Board members Wendy Oliveira and Robert Hiscox were absent.
There currently are no formal programs in place at Algonquin and Community schools, which will be replaced by the new school, in Prospect. Up until last week, much of the discussion about establishing the program focused on expanding the current program run at Laurel Ledge Elementary School in Beacon Falls to the new school.
The program at Laurel Ledge is run by the United Day School, a private business based out of the Beacon Falls Congregational Church. The United Day School is owned by Oliveira.
United Day has run the program since 2002. Oliveira has served on the board for the past seven years. She has not participated in any of the discussions other than to answer questions from the board.
Superintendent of Schools Michael Yamin said the United Day School will be allowed to submit a bid to run the program like any other business.
There is at least one other organization interested in the job.
Jim O’Rourke, executive director of the Greater Waterbury YMCA, addressed the board at its Oct. 8 meeting about what the YMCA can offer for a before and afterschool program.
“I hope the board and Region 16 consider the YMCA as a potential partner,” he told the board.
As the board looked into expanding the United Day School program, an issue with the fee the business pays to use the school came to light.
According to school officials, United Day School pays the district $20 a day to use Laurel Ledge. The fee was set when the program started without the approval of the board and has never come up again for an annual approval, according to school officials.
The board approved a revised fee schedule for groups that use a school last year and are looking it over again. The charge for the United Day School is out of line with the fee schedule.
Board member Nazih Noujaim put motion on the table last week to raise the daily usage fee for the United Day School by $10 for the second half of school year. The motion failed after it did not receive a second.
The fee for the United Day School is expected to be reviewed before the start of the 2015-16 school year.