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STUDY SUGGESTS SHARING TEACHERS

Maybe schools across Erie County should find a way to share teachers so that more Advanced Placement courses can be offered to more students.

The same thing might work for other courses, too, like art or foreign languages. Or perhaps districts should coordinate their bus schedules with one another to help bring transportation costs down for everybody.

Those are among possible collaborations involving Erie County schools that could cut costs and improve education, according to a Cornell University study.

The $350,000 regional collaboration study coordinated by the Erie County Association of School Boards is closing in on final recommendations. The group is looking for public input on several preliminary recommendations.

Representatives from Cornell will present several of their suggestions at three public sessions: 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday in the Orchard Park School District offices, 3330 Baker Road; 7:45 to 9:15 a.m. Nov. 3 in Livingston Hall at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle; and 7 to 8:30 p.m. Nov. 8 in Sweet Home Community Center, 1901 Sweet Home Road, Amherst.

"At this point, we need to hear from the community," said Jacqueline J. Paone, executive director of the County Association of School Boards. "We need to know what has the best chance of success from the community's point of view."

She said that ideas presented at the public forums are nothing more than possibilities. Feedback will help shape the final recommendations, which will go to a steering committee in December.

The final report will be shared with the community in public sessions in February and March, Paone said. Final recommendations could be implemented only with local school support.

e-mail: mpasciak@buffnews.com