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MPS to enter negotiations to privatize MACC

Canoga Park Childcare makes proposal to run center

MARSHALL — The name of a possible new operator for the Marshall Area Childcare Center was made public Monday night during a Marshall School Board meeting. Board members voted to enter negotiations with Canoga Park Childcare on a possible arrangement to privatize MACC.

Earlier this month, Marshall Superintendent Jeremy Williams said a task force exploring options to keep MACC open had received a proposal from a local child care center. Williams said the proposal from Canoga Park included subleasing MACC and an outdoor play area from the school district for $1,000 a month, as well as purchasing existing furniture and equipment for $5,000. Current MACC staff would remain employees of the Marshall Public School District.

Canoga Park currently operates two other day care centers in Marshall.

If the proposal is approved, Williams said it could have a target transition date of July 1. However, the school district will need to work with Canoga Park Childcare on issues like staffing, enrollment, and licensing.

“We would work with them for a seamless transfer,” Williams said.

Having a private day care take over MACC could help the center stay open. Earlier this year, the school board had discussed closing MACC, noting that the facility had been operating in the red for years. While district staff said they hadn’t been able to find a long-term solution, a group of area parents reached out to the school district and regional organizations to try and find more alternatives.

“I appreciate the work that was put in by the task force,” Williams said Monday.

While there wasn’t a lot of additional discussion at Monday’s board meeting, school board members said they were in favor of negotiating with Canoga Park Childcare.

“I think it’s two pluses,” board member Bill Swope said of the proposal. One plus was keeping MACC open, and the other was reducing the district’s annual losses.

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