Warwick Transition

The Warwick Transition Process
Spring 2022 Update

In the spring of 2020, Warwick residents voted at Town Meeting, in accordance with the process outlined in the Regional District Agreement, to withdraw from Pioneer Valley Regional School District and create their own town-based district.

The new district will educate students in the elementary grades at the Warwick Community School and will have a tuition agreement with PVRSD that will enable older students to attend Pioneer Valley Regional School.

The Warwick Transition Subcommittee has collaborated with colleagues in Warwick for two years to develop a Transition Agreement that would facilitate the town’s withdrawal from PVRSD. The PVRSD School Committee will need to approve the final Transition Agreement.

Over the past three months, the two parties (PVRSD and Warwick) have revitalized the transition process by affirming shared values, meeting regularly, and making steady progress on the draft Transition Agreement.

There have been multiple iterations of this draft Transition Agreement. We now have a single working document that reflects initial feedback from PVRSD, Warwick, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), and a consultant from MARS (MA Association of Regional Schools).

In addition, both parties have been in ongoing communication with DESE; see below for correspondence with the state.

Warwick Transition Subcommittee

Michele Giarusso (Chair)

Karen O’Neil

Nathan Schwartz

DESE’s role in the transition

DESE must approve the Transition Agreement and has, therefore, been providing support and guidance throughout the development of the document.

Recent correspondence with DESE

Senator Comerford and Rep. Whipps letter to DESE

DESE letter re Warwick 11/9/21

DESE letter re Warwick 12/23/21

DESE letter re Warwick 3/22/22

Transition Agreement document

The two parties have been working collaboratively to complete a Transition Agreement that:

  • facilitates the withdrawal of Warwick from PVRSD in an orderly fashion;

  • provides all four towns with a road map for how the transition will proceed;

  • includes a contract that details how Warwick will meet its future financial obligations, including Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB) and pension, using annual payments to PVRSD (see DESE correspondence 3/22/22);

  • includes a tuition agreement regarding Warwick students who attend PVRS;

  • represents the interests of both parties in an equitable and reasonable manner; and,

  • meets the approval of DESE.