The following steps must be taken to close a school in a City or Town with Individual Supervision, an Alternative Organizational Structure (AOS), or a School Union.
Download an Internal Checklist for your use as you proceed.
- School Board votes to close school.
- Wait 30 days as required by 20-A MRSA §4102 to allow for a written petition by 10% of the number of voters in the school administrative unit who voted at the last gubernatorial election requesting a special referendum. If a petition is received, a special referendum must be held before the school may be closed.
- If no petition is received, submit a letter to the Commissioner containing:
- Date and results of School Board vote to close school
- Name and location of school to be closed
- Lack of need report - all required information must be included (see below)
- The Commissioner will notify the SAU if the documentation is in compliance with the statute.
Lack of Need Report must be filed with the Commissioner containing the following information:
- Projection of the number of students in the affected area over the next 5 school years, including a projection of the educational programs which they will need;
- Manner in which the continuation of the educational programs for the affected students will be provided;
- Effective date on which the closing will take place;
- Projection of additional transportation or other related services;
- Existence of any other outstanding financial commitments, including debt service, related to the school building along with a retirement schedule of payments to meet the commitments;
- Proposed disposition of the school building;
- Financial impact of closing the school building;
- Statement of reasons why the school building is being closed.
Before a school board may close a school building pursuant to "Lack of Need", voter approval shall be obtained as follows:
Elementary or Secondary schools in Cities or Towns with Individual Supervision, Alternative Organizational Structures or Unions may be closed without voter approval, unless the school board is presented with a written petition, within 30 days of the board's decision to close the school, by 10% of the number of voters in the school administrative unit who voted at the last gubernatorial election, then a special referendum shall be called pursuant to Title 21-A and Title 30-A, respectively, for cities and towns.