Most districts work with others to provide support services. Nearly 250 school districts contract with neighboring districts or ISDs for pieces of the three major support services. The shared service can be as small in scope as a single business manager or transportation supervisor dividing their time between two districts or as large as the complete provision of food service in one district by another. The survey found that complete sharing of food, custodial or transportation services between districts is fairly rare, but single positions (such as food service managers) are more commonly shared. Services which only affect a relatively small number of students, such as special and adult education, are frequently shared via ISDs.
More than 100 of Michigan’s school districts share at least some portion of their food services. In the majority of these arrangements, a single food service director divides their time between two or three districts.
Reading Community School shares a food manager with Jonesville Community Schools, while contracting for their cafeteria staff with PESG. Similarly, Lamphere Schools shares a food service director with Madison District Public Schools.
Saginaw Township Community Schools runs an efficient food program and has entered into contracts to share this food service with nearby schools. Swan Valley School District and two local parochial schools contract for food service with Saginaw Township, rather than providing their own food service. Both districts involved report satisfaction with the agreement, which has lasted multiple years.
Bronson, Coldwater and Quincy Community Schools, all located within Branch County, have formed a consortium to share special education transportation services.