After a joint meeting held at the on Friday, both the Springs and East Hampton school boards announced they have come to terms regarding a negotiated tuition agreement, a long standing contentious issue.
A new tuition contract will be executed at a five percent discount for the first year with not only Springs, but other sending districts until 2015, according to a joint statement from East Hampton and Springs. East Hampton has also agreed to reconcile overpayment.
The new multi-year tuition agreement was reached after a long negotiation over the disputed tuition calculation formula. “Over the last ten months the superintendents and business officials of the respective districts have been meeting to discuss the perceived flaws in the Seneca falls formula by which high school costs are allocated per student to the sending districts through tuition."
With the assistance of the New York State education department, and Eastern Suffolk BOCES, East Hampton and Springs reached an agreement that the formula "needed to be modified to create a reasonable and equitable formula going forward,” according to the statement.
A new tuition contract will be executed with Springs and other sending district to run until 2015. The new tuition will still be based on the Seneca Falls formula, less a five percent discount in the first year.
Also, in the first year there will also be a reconciliation for overpayment which amounts to about seven percent of tuition paid. Thereafter, the tuition rate will increase at the same rate as the East Hampton High School budget with the understanding that the rate will never be more than 95 percent of the Seneca Falls calculate rate.
In addition to the economic terms there will be a rider with the Springs district agreement in which the Springs district will “abandon” efforts to develop a charter school as an alternative to the high school.
Springs agreed for the next year, students who wish to attend Bridgehampton or Sag Harbor high schools will need the approval of the East Hampton School district, on a case by case basis.
Both parties agreed the news represents an “understanding between the districts with an intent that they work together in the best interests of their taxpayers and students.”
This story will be updated with more information when it becomes available.