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Olean School District selling two school buildings

school in olean.jpg

With fewer students and less money from Albany, school districts are cutting wherever they can.
That includes some districts selling school buildings, which have been central to communities for decades.

The Olean City School Distirct is selling  two schools on the block.  Its century-old Ivers J. Norton Elementery School and the nearly-as-old Boardmanville Elementary School.

Olean Schools Superintendent Colleen Taggerty said there have been more than a dozen visits by interested groups, with a September 12 deadline for bids.

City voters will have to approve the sales for the deals to go through. Olean won't be the first nor the last to sell buildings. 

Olean Superintendent Taggerty said it's a sign of  the times.

"Fewer students and the economic crisis that all not just school districts but cities and towns and communities are facing with less state aid.  We're very limited in the revenue streams that we have. So when the aid reduces, we either increase taxing or we have to go out for grants, e-rates, things like that to bring in other revenue sources," said Taggerty.

Buffalo's school district has sold some buildings and other districts will have empty buildings to deal with, as well.

The Kenmore-Tonawanda School Board will be decide Tuesday night to close Jefferson Elementary.  Over the years, Ken-Ton has closed and sold a number of school buildings.

In Olean, Taggerty said the district is moving students into two buildings which don't need any construction to educate more students.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.