HOWELL – Howell Township Public School District and Freehold Borough K-8 School District have entered into a shared service agreement which will allow Howell to provide bus transportation to Freehold students.
At a recent Board of Education meeting, board members passed a motion that would allow for the shared services agreement “to provide transportation services beginning Sept. 1, 2019.”
The Freehold district then approved the agreement at its Board of Education meeting, stating that the deal will be in effect from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2024.
According to the agreement, the Freehold Borough Board of Education “deems it to be in the best interest of the district and of the taxpayers” to enter into the shared service agreement with Howell as it “operates a full service transportation department…and has the capacity to manage Freehold Borough Board of Education’s transportation department and provide mandated busing to Freehold Borough pupils.”
Under the terms of the agreement, the Howell district will provide transportation and director services, the planning of bus routes, the submission of the annual district report for transported students, mailing of bus passes, and at least two “dry runs” before the 2019-2020 school year begins.
Howell will be bussing “an identified list of students,” grades preschool through eighth grade, from all three Freehold Borough schools: the Freehold Learning Center elementary school, the Park Avenue Elementary School and the Freehold Intermediate School.
Howell will service nine bus routes; two to the Freehold Intermediate School, two to the Park Avenue Elementary School and five to the Freehold Learning Center. The agreement also dictates that Howell will provide transportation for after school and field trips at an additional cost, if advance notice is given.
For this shared service, Freehold district will pay Howell $410,000, made in 10 equal monthly payments starting Sept. 1.
“Additional costs for transportation services on days which Howell Township is closed or on altered schedule and the Borough is on a regular day will be billed on an ‘at cost’ basis,” stated the agreement.
In addition, Freehold will be turning over their one 2007 24-passenger van to Howell.