Millersburg Area School District

Millersburg Area School District
Millersburg School District
799 Center Street
Millersburg, Pennsylvania, Dauphin, 17061
United States
School board 9 elected members
Superintendent Sheree-Lee S. Knorr
Administrator Gaynelle M. Angelo, Special Education Supervisor
Principal Stephen A. Herman, High School Principal
Principal Jeffrey L. Prouse, Middle School Principal
Principal John C. Welker, Elementary Principal
Brian W. Campbell, Curriculum and Instruction Supervisor
Grades K-12
Kindergarten 73
Grade 1 55
Grade 2 59
Grade 3 79
Grade 4 66
Grade 5 49
Grade 6 77
Grade 7 65
Grade 8 62
Grade 9 64
Grade 10 76
Grade 11 62
Grade 12 75
Other Enrollment to be 900 in 2019[2]
Mascot Indians

The Millersburg School District is a small, rural, public school district located in the northwestern portion of Dauphin County, Pennsylvania. It encompasses the borough of Millersburg and the surrounding Township of Upper Paxton. The district features one elementary school and one junior/senior high school. Millersburg Area School District encompasses approximately 32 square miles (83 km2). According to 2007 local census data, it serves a resident population of 6,420. In 2009, the district residents' per capita income was $18,447, while the median family income was $45,919. [3] According to School District officials, in school year 2007-08 the Millersburg Area School District provided basic educational services to 927 pupils through the employment of 84 teachers, 33 full-time and part-time support personnel, and 8 administrators.



Millersburg School District is governed by 9 individually elected board members (serve four year terms), the Pennsylvania State Board of Education, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania General Assembly.[4] The federal government controls programs it funds like Title I funding for low income children in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the No Child Left Behind Act which mandates the district focus resources on student success in acquiring reading and math skills.

The Commonwealth Foundation for Public Policy Alternatives Sunshine Review gave the school board and district administration a "D-" for transparency based on a review of "What information can people find on their school district's website". It examined the school district's website for information regarding; taxes, the current budget, meetings, school board members names and terms, contracts, audits, public records information and more.[5]

The district is served by the Capital Area Intermediate Unit 15 which offers a variety of services including: a completely developed K-12 curriculum that is mapped and aligned with the Pennsylvania Academic Standards (available online), shared services, a group purchasing program and a wide variety of special education and special needs services.

Academic achievement

In 2011, the school district ranked 314th out of 498 Pennsylvania districts by the Pittsburgh Business Times.[6] The ranking is based on five years of student academic achievement as demonstrated by PSSAs results in: reading, writing, math and three years of science.

  • 2010 - 268th [7]
  • 2009 - 311th
  • 2008 - 323rd
  • 2007 - 332nd out of 501 Pennsylvania school districts ranking,.[8]

In 2009, Millersburg School District student academic achievement ranked in the 48th percentile among 500 PA school districts. (0-99; 100 is state best)[9]

Graduation rate

In 2011, the graduation rate was 98%. [10] In 2010, the Pennsylvania Department of Education issued a new, 4 year cohort graduation rate. Millersburg Area High School's rate was 93% for 2010.[11]

According to traditional graduation rate calculations:

  • 2010 - 98% [12]
  • 2009 - 92%
  • 2008 - 93%
  • 2007 - 93% [13]

High school

In 2011, Millersburg Area Senior High School achieved "AYP" status. In 2010, the high school was in "Warning" status due to chronic, low student achievement. [14]

PSSA Results
11th Grade Reading:
  • 2011 - 67% on grade level, (16% below basic). 69.1% of 11th graders are on grade level.[15]
  • 2010 - 64%, State - 66% [16]
  • 2009 - 74%, State - 65% [17]
  • 2008 - 77%, State - 65%
  • 2007 - 78%, State - 65%[18]
11th Grade Math:
  • 2011 - 45% on grade level (38% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 60.3% of 11th graders are on grade level.
  • 2010 - 40%, State - 59%
  • 2009 - 54%, State - 56% [19]
  • 2008 - 49%, State - 56%
  • 2007 - 57%, State - 53%
11th Grade Science:
  • 2011 - 45% on grade level (14% below basic). State - 40% of 11th graders were on grade level.
  • 2010 - 37%, State - 39% [20]
  • 2009 - 48%, State - 40%
  • 2008 - 42%, State - 39% [21]

College remediation: According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 42% of Millersburg School District graduates required remediation in mathematics and or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges.[22] Less than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates, who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania, will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years.[23] Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.

Graduation requirements

The Millersburg Area School Board has determined that a student must earn 24.5 credits to graduate including: English 4 credits, Social Studies 3 credits, Math 3 credits, Science 3 credits, ArtsHumanities 2 credits, Physical education 1 credits, Health 0.5 credit, Safety education .25 credit and 7.75 credits in electives. [24]

By law, all Pennsylvania secondary school students must complete a project as a part of their eligibility to graduate from high school. The type of project, its rigor and its expectations are set by the individual school district.[25] At Millersburg Area School District students are required to perform 20 hours of approved service to the school or community. [26] The students must perform various tasks related to their project and submit them to the school.

By Pennsylvania School Board regulations, for the graduating classes of 2016, students must demonstrate successful completion of secondary level course work in Algebra I, Biology, English Composition, and Literature for which the Keystone Exams serve as the final course exams. Students’ Keystone Exam scores count for at least one-third of the final course grade.[27]

Dual enrollment

The high school offers a Dual Enrollment program. This state program permits high school students to take courses, at local higher education institutions, to earn college credits. Students remain enrolled at their high school. The courses count towards high school graduation requirements and towards earning a college degree. The students continue to have full access to activities at their high school. The college credits are offered at a deeply discounted rate. The state offers a small grant to assist students in costs for tuition, fees and books.[28] Under the Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement, many Pennsylvania colleges and universities accept these credits for students who transfer to their institutions.[29]

For the 2009-10 funding year, the school district received a state grant of $558 for the program.

Online learning

The school administration has implemented an online learning program called Capital Area Online Learning Association. The intent is to extend offerings to students. It is provided through the area's intermediate unit. In 2011, twenty central Pennsyvlania region school districts and charter schools were participating in the virtual education program. [30]

Middle school

In 2009 and 2010 the school achieved AYP status. [31] The attendance rate was declined to 94% in 2010. In 2009 the attendance rate was 95.6%. [32]

8th Grade Reading:

  • 2011 - 73% on grade level (7% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 81.8% of 8th graders on grade level.
  • 2010 - 79% on grade level. State - 81% [33]
  • 2009 - 80%, State - 80% [34]
  • 2008 - 78%, State - 78%
  • 2007 - 69%, State - 75%

8th Grade Math:

  • 2011 - 85% on grade level (6% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 76.9% of 8th graders are on grade level
  • 2010 - 70%, State - 75%
  • 2009 - 77%, State - 71%
  • 2008 - 59%, State - 70%
  • 2007 - 57%, State - 68%

8th Grade Science:

  • 2011 - 60% on grade level (19% below basic). State – 58.3% of 8th graders were on grade level.
  • 2010 - 56%, State: -57%
  • 2009 - 63%, State - 55%
  • 2008 - 56%, State - 52% [35]
7th Grade Reading:
  • 2011 - 85% on grade level (5% below basic). State – 76%
  • 2010 - 67% on grade level. State - 73%
  • 2009 - 71%, State - 71%
  • 2008 - 70%, State - 70%
  • 2007 - 73%, State - 67%
7th Grade Math:
  • 2011 - 94% on grade level (4% below basic). State - 78.6%
  • 2010 - 81% on grade level. State - 78%
  • 2009 - 74%, State - 75%
  • 2008 - 70%, State - 70% [36]
  • 2007 - 63%, State - 67%

6th Grade Reading:

  • 2011 - 60% on grade level (15% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 69.9% of 6th graders are on grade level.
  • 2010 - 72% on grade level. State - 68%
  • 2009 - 65%, State - 67%
  • 2008 - 61%, State - 67%
  • 2007 - 66%, State - 63%

6th Grade Math:

  • 2011 - 75% on grade level (6% below basic). State - 78.8%
  • 2010 - 90% on grade level. State - 78%
  • 2009 - 85%, State - 75%
  • 2008 - 74%, State - 72%
  • 2007 - 61%, State - 69% [37]

Lenkerville Elementary School

In 2009 and 2010 the school achieved AYP status. [38] The attendance rate was 95% in both 2010 and 2009. [39]

5th Grade Reading:
  • 2011 - 65% on grade level (14% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 67.3% of 5th graders are on grade level.
  • 2010 - 42%, State - 64% [40]
  • 2009 - 72%, State - 64%
  • 2008 - 53%, State - 61%
  • 2007 - 68%, State - 60%
5th Grade Math:
  • 2011 - 67% on grade level (9% below basic). State - 74%
  • 2010 - 58%, State - 74%
  • 2009 - 85%, State - 73%
  • 2008 - 80%, State - 73%
  • 2007 - 75%, State - 71%
4th Grade Reading:
  • 2011 - 72% (9% below basic), State – 73.3%
  • 2010 - 80%, State - 73%
  • 2009 - 77%, State - 72%
  • 2008 - 89%, State - 70%
  • 2007 - 72%, State - 60%
4th Grade Math:
  • 2011 - 81% (11% below basic), State – 85.3%
  • 2010 - 88%, State - 81%
  • 2009 - 79%, State - 81%
  • 2008 - 95%, State - 79%
  • 2007 - 88%, State - 78%

4th Grade Science:

  • 2011 - 91%, 52% advanced. State – 82.9%
  • 2010 - 91%, State - 81%
  • 2009 - 91%, State - 83%
  • 2008 - 89%, State - 81%

3rd Grade Reading:

  • 2011 - 88%, (0% below basic). State – 77.2%
  • 2010 - 75%, (8% below basic), State - 75%
  • 2009 - 80%, State - 77%
  • 2008 - 76%, State - 77%
  • 2007 - 68%, State - 72%

3rd Grade Math:

  • 2011 - 94%, 54% advanced. State – 83.5%
  • 2010 - 87%, (0% below basic), State - 84%
  • 2009 - 91%, State - 81%
  • 2008 - 82%, State - 80%
  • 2007 - 75%, State - 78%

Enrollment and Consolidation

The enrollment at Millerburg Area School District is among the lowest 8% in Pennsylvania. Department of Education enrollment projections do not anticipate a growth in enrollment for the next decade.[41] A Standard and Poors 2007 study found that an optimal school district size, to conserve administrative costs, was 3000 pupils. Consolidation of administrations with an adjacent school district would achieve substantial administrative cost savings for people in both communities.[42] According to a 2009 proposal by Governor Edward Rendell, the excessive administrative overhead dollars could be redirected to improving high school student academic achievement, enriching the curriculum programs or to reducing local property taxes.[43]

A state study was conducted in 2006, examining consolidating school administration of Halifax Area School District with Millersburg Area School District administration. The projected savings was over $1.600,000. The study also examined a consolidation with Line Mountain School District which also yielded significant savings for local taxpayers.[44] The study noted that consolidation could significantly decrease school administrative costs for the communities while significantly improving offerings to students.

More than 40 percent of elementary schools and more than 60 percent of secondary schools in Pennsylvania are projected to experience significant enrollment decreases (15 percent or greater).[45] Pennsylvania Department of Education data shows that from 1999-2000 to 2008-09 there has been a 12 percent increase in public school staff even as there was a 1 percent decline in enrollment. Pennsylvania schools added 17,345 professional employees and 15,582 support workers over this time, while enrollment declined by 26,960.[46] Total public school enrollment in 2009 was 1,787,351 pupils. Pennsylvania continues to experience a steady exodus of young people and a loss of population that has resulted in the loss of seats in the US Congress.[47]

Pennsylvania has one of the highest numbers of school districts in the nation. In Pennsylvania, 80% of the school districts serve student populations under 5,000, and 40% serve less than 2,000. This results in excessive school administration bureaucracy and not enough course diversity.[48] In a survey of 88 superintendents of small districts, 42% of the respondents stated that they thought consolidation would save money without closing any schools.[49]

Special Education

In December 2009, the district administration reported that 120 pupils or 14% of the district's pupils received Special Education services.[50]

The District engages in identification procedures to ensure that eligible students receive an appropriate educational program consisting of special education and related services, individualized to meet student needs. At no cost to the parents, these services are provided in compliance with state and federal law; and are reasonably calculated to yield meaningful educational benefit and student progress. To identify students who may be eligible for special education, various screening activities are conducted on an ongoing basis. These screening activities include: review of group-based data (cumulative records, enrollment records, health records, report cards, ability and achievement test scores); hearing, vision, motor, and speech/language screening; and review by the Instructional Support Team or Student Assistance Team. When screening results suggest that the student may be eligible, the District seeks parental consent to conduct a multidisciplinary evaluation. Parents who suspect their child is eligible may verbally request a multidisciplinary evaluation from a professional employee of the District or contact the Special Education Supervisor.[51]

In 2010, the state of Pennsylvania provided $1,026,815,000 for Special Education services. The funds were distributed to districts based on a state policy which estimates that 16% of the district's pupils are receiving special education services. This funding is in addition to the state's basic education per pupil funding, as well as, all other state and federal funding.[52]

Millersburg Area School District received a $540,283 supplement for special education services in 2010.[53]

For the 2011-12 school year, all Pennsylvania public school districts received the same level of funding for special education that they received in 2010. This level funding is provided regardless of changes in the number of pupils who need special education services and regardless of the level of services the respective students required. [54]

Gifted Education

The District Administration reported that 22 or 2.57% of its students were gifted in 2009. [55] By law, the district must provide mentally gifted programs at all grade levels. The primary emphasis is on enrichment and acceleration of the regular education curriculum. [56] This approach permits such specialized instructional strategies as tiered assignments, curriculum compacting, flexible grouping, learning stations, independent projects and independent contracts. Students identified as gifted attending the High School have access to honors and advanced placement courses, and dual enrollment with local colleges. The referral process for a gifted evaluation can be initiated by teachers or parents by contacting the student’s building principal and requesting an evaluation. All requests must be made in writing. To be eligible for mentally gifted programs in Pennsylvania, a student must have a cognitive ability of at least 130 as measured on a standardized ability test by a certified school psychologist. Other factors that indicate giftedness will also be considered for eligibility. [57]


In November 2008, the school board approved a five year contract with the teachers' union that includes 3% raises for 3 years followed by a 3.5% increase the final two years. The contract began July 2009.[58] The contract calls for 190 working days with 9 as faculty inservice days. The contract calls for a benefits package which includes: health insurance, life insurance, personal days, sick days, reimbursement for college courses, and an early retirement bonus of $6,000 to $10,000 depending on length of employment.[59]

In 2007, the average teacher salary in the district was $47,048 for 180 days worked.[60]

The district administrative costs per pupil in 2008 were $1140 per pupil. The district is ranked 29th among Pennsylvania's 500 districts for administrative spending. The lowest administrative cost per pupil in Pennsylvania was $398 per pupil.[61] In 2009, the district reported the superintendent's salary was $100,000.[62]

In 2008, Millersburg Area School District per pupil spending was $12,427. This ranked 231st in 500 Pennsylvania public school districts.[63]

The district is funded by a combination of: a local income tax, a property tax, a real estate transfer tax 0.5%, coupled with substantial funding from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the federal government. Grants can provide an opportunity to supplement school funding without raising local taxes. In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, pension income and Social Security income are exempted from state personal income tax and local earned income tax regardless of the wealth of the individual.[64]

In September 2010, the Pennsylvania Auditor General conducted a performance audit of the district. Results were reported to the school board and administration. [65]

State basic education funding

In 2011-12, the district will receive $3,819,060 in state Basic Education Funding. [66] Additionally, the district will receive $46,262 in Accountability Block Grant funding. In 2010, the district reported that 3,053 pupils received a free or reduced lunch due to their family meeting the federal poverty level. The highest increase in state basic education funding was awarded to Duquesne City School District which got a 49% increase in state funding for 2011-12.[67]

For the 2010-11 school year, the Millersburg School District received a 3.22% increase in state basic education funding for a total of $4,105,973.[68] Among school districts in Dauphin County, the highest increase went to Susquehanna Township School District which received a 15.89% increase. In Pennsylvania 150 school districts received the base 2% increase. Kennett Consolidated School District in Chester County received the largest, a 23.65% increase. The amount of increase each school district receives is determined by the Governor and the Secretary of Education through the allocation set in the state budget proposal made in February each year.[69]

In the 2009-2010 budget year the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania provided a 4.16% increase in Basic Education Funding for a total of $3,977,943 to the Millersburg Area School District. The state Basic Education Funding to the district in 2008-09 was $3,819,059.77. The district also received supplemental funding for: Title I (federal funding for low income students), for district size, a poverty supplement from the Commonwealth and more. Three school districts in Dauphin County received an increase in excess of 5%. In Dauphin County, the highest 2009 state funding increase was 10.66% for Susquehanna Township School District. Muhlenberg School District in Berks County received the highest increase in the commonwealth at 22.31%. Ninety school districts in Pennsylvania received a base 2% increase in state funding in 2009.[70]

Accountability Block Grants

Beginning in 2004-2005, the state launched the Accountability Block Grant school funding. This program has provided $1.5 billion to Pennsylvania’s school districts. The Accountability Block Grant program requires that its taxpayer dollars are focused on specific interventions that are most likely to increase student academic achievement. These interventions include: teacher training, All Day Kindergarten, lower class size K-3rd grade, literacy and math Coaching programs that provide teachers with individualized job-embedded professional development to improve their instruction, before or after school tutoring assistance to struggling students, For 2010-11 the district applied for and received $125,566 in addition to all other state and federal funding. The Millersburg Area School District uses the funding to reduce class size in K-3rd grade and to provide teacher training to improve instruction through the use of research based programs.[71][72]

Classrooms for the Future grant

The Classroom for the Future state program provided districts with hundreds of thousands of extra state funding to buy laptop computers for each core curriculum high school class (English, Science, History, Math) and paid for teacher training to optimize the computers use. Millersburg School District was one of 4 out of 500 PA school Districts that failed to apply for the grants.[73]

Federal Stimulus Grant

The district received an extra $721,236 in ARRA - Federal Stimulus money to be used in specific programs like special education and meeting the academic needs of low income students.[74] The funding was for the 2009-10 and 2010-11 school years.

Race to the Top grant

School district officials did not apply for the Race to the Top federal grant which would bring the district hundreds of thousands of additional federal dollars for improving student academic achievement.[75] Participation required the administration, the school board and the local teachers' union sign an agreement to prioritize improving student academic achievement. In Pennsylvania, 120 public school districts and 56 charter schools agreed to participate. [76] Pennsylvania was not approved for the grant. The failure of districts to agree to participate was cited as one reason that Pennsylvania was not approved.[77]

Common Cents state initiative

The school board elected to not participate in the Pennsylvania Department of Education Common Cents program. The program called for the state to audit the district, at no cost to local taxpayers, to identify ways the district could save tax dollars.[78] After the review of the information, the district was not required to implement the recommended cost savings changes.

Real estate taxes

Property tax rates in 2011-2012 were set at 17.2210 mills. [79] Tax rates are set as a part of the annual school budget process which must be passed by June 30 of each year. A mill is $1 of tax for every $1,000 of a property's assessed value. Property taxes, in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, apply only to real estate - land and buildings. The property tax is not levied on cars, business inventory, or other personal property. Certain types of property are exempt from property taxes including: places of worship, places of burial, private social clubs, charitable and educational institutions and government property. Irregular property reassessments have become a serious issue in the commonwealth as it creates a significant disparity in taxation within a community and across a region. Additionally, service related, disabled US military veterans may seek an exemption from paying property taxes. Pennsylvania school district revenues are dominated by two main sources: 1) Property tax collections, which account for the vast majority (between 75-85%) of local revenues; and 2) Act 511 tax collections, which are around 15% of revenues for school districts. [80]

  • 2010-11 - 17.2210 mills.
  • 2009-10 - 16.5750 mills.[81]
  • 2008-09 - 16.5750 mills.[82]
  • 2007-08 - 15.9460 mills. [83]

Act 1 Adjusted index

The Act 1 of 2006 Index regulates the rates at which each school district can raise property taxes in Pennsylvania. Districts are not allowed to raise taxes above that index unless they allow voters to vote by referendum, or they seek an exception from the state Department of Education. The base index for the 2011-2012 school year is 1.4 percent, but the Act 1 Index can be adjusted higher, depending on a number of factors, such as property values and the personal income of district residents. Act 1 included 10 exceptions including: increasing pension costs, increases in special education costs, a catastrophe like a fire or flood, increase in health insurance costs for contracts in effect in 2006 or dwindling tax bases. The base index is the average of the percentage increase in the statewide average weekly wage, as determined by the PA Department of Labor and Industry, for the preceding calendar year and the percentage increase in the Employment Cost Index for Elementary and Secondary Schools, as determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the U.S. Department of Labor, for the previous 12-month period ending June 30. For a school district with a market value/personal income aid ratio (MV/PI AR) greater than 0.4000, its index equals the base index multiplied by the sum of .75 and its MV/PI AR for the current year.[84]

The School District Adjusted Index for the Millersburg Area School District 2006-2007 through 2010-2011.[85]

  • 2006-07 - 5.1%, Base 3.9%
  • 2007-08 - 4.5%, Base 3.4%
  • 2008-09 - 5.8%, Base 4.4%
  • 2009-10 - 5.5%, Base 4.1%
  • 2010-11 - 3.9%, Base 2.9%
  • 2011-12 - 1.9%, Base 1.4%
  • 2012-13 - 2.3%, Base 1.7%

For the 2011-12 school year, the Millersburg Area School Board did not apply for exceptions to exceed the Act 1 Index. Each year, the School Board has the option of adopting either 1) a resolution in January certifying they will not increase taxes above their index or 2) a preliminary budget in February. A school district adopting the resolution may not apply for referendum exceptions or ask voters for a tax increase above the inflation index. A specific timeline for these decisions is published each year by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. [86]

According to a state report, for the 2011-2012 school year budgets, 247 school districts adopted a resolution certifying that tax rates would not be increased above their index; 250 school districts adopted a preliminary budget. Of the 250 school districts that adopted a preliminary budget, 231 adopted real estate tax rates that exceeded their index. Tax rate increases in the other 19 school districts that adopted a preliminary budget did not exceed the school district’s index. Of the districts who sought exceptions 221 used the pension costs exemption and 171 sought a Special Education costs exemption. Only 1 school district sought an exemption for Nonacademic School Construction Project, while 1 sought an exception for Electoral debt for school construction. [87]

The Millersburg School Board did not seek exceptions to exceed the Act 1 index for the 2010-11 school year.[88] In the Spring of 2010, 135 Pennsylvania school boards asked to exceed their adjusted index. Approval was granted to 133 of them and 128 sought an exception for pension costs increases.[89]

In 2007, the Millersburg School Board adopted a resolution to not exceed the assigned Act 1 limit.[90]

Property tax relief

In 2009, the Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief from gambling for the Millersburg Area School District was $150 per approved permanent primary residence. In the district, 1,669 property owners applied for the tax relief. In Dauphin County, the highest amount of tax relief in 2009, went to Harrisburg School District at $446.[91] The tax relief was subtracted from the total annual school property tax bill. Property owners apply for the relief through the county Treasurer's office. Farmers can qualify for a farmstead exemption on building used for agricultural purposes. The farm must be at least 10 contiguous acres and must be the primary residence of the owner. Farmers can qualify for both the homestead exemption and the farmstead exemption. In Dauphin County, 68.71% of eligible property owners applied for property tax relief in 2009.[92] Pennsylvania awarded the highest property tax relief to residents of the Chester-Upland School District in Delaware County at $632 per homestead and farmstead in 2010.[93] According to a report released by the Pennsylvania Auditor General, in Dauphin County, 68.71% of eligible property owners applied for property tax relief in 2009.[94]

Additionally, the Pennsylvania Property Tax/Rent Rebate program is provided for low income Pennsylvanians aged 65 and older; widows and widowers aged 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 for homeowners. The maximum rebate for both homeowners and renters is $650. Applicants can exclude one-half (1/2) of their Social Security income, consequently individuals whose income is substantially more than $35,000 may still qualify for a rebate. Individuals must apply annually for the rebate. This can be taken in addition to Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief.

Property taxes in Pennsylvania are relatively high on a national scale. According to the Tax Foundation, Pennsylvania ranked 11th in the U.S. in 2008 in terms of property taxes paid as a percentage of home value (1.34%) and 12th in the country in terms of property taxes as a percentage of income (3.55%).[95][96]

Wellness policy

Millersburg Area School Board established a district wellness policy in 2006 - Policy 246.[97][98] The policy deals with nutritious meals served at school, the control of access to some foods and beverages during school hours, age appropriate nutrition education for all students, and physical education for students K-12. The policy is in response to state mandates and federal legislation (P.L. 108 - 265). The law dictates that each school district participating in a program authorized by the National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1751 et seq) or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (42 U.S.C. 1771 et seq) "shall establish a local school wellness policy by School Year 2006."

The legislation placed the responsibility of developing a wellness policy at the local level so the individual needs of each district can be addressed. According to the requirements for the Local Wellness Policy, school districts must set goals for nutrition education, physical activity, campus food provision, and other school-based activities designed to promote student wellness. Additionally, districts were required to involve a broad group of individuals in policy development and to have a plan for measuring policy implementation. Districts were offered a choice of levels of implementation for limiting or prohibiting low nutrition foods on the school campus. In final implementation these regulations prohibit some foods and beverages on the school campus.[99]

The Pennsylvania Department of Education required the district to submit a copy of the policy for approval.

Bullying Policy

In 2009, the Millersburg School District reported zero incidents of bullying in the previous school year, although since then there have been several cases that students feel have not been properly addressed.[100][101]

The school board prohibits bullying by district students and employees. A policy approved in March defines bullying and cyberbullying - Policy 249. The Board directs that complaints of bullying shall be investigated promptly, and corrective action shall be taken when allegations are verified. No reprisals or retaliation shall occur as a result of good faith reports of bullying.[102] All Pennsylvania schools are required to have an anti-bullying policy incorporated into their Code of Student Conduct. The policy must identify disciplinary actions for bullying and designate a school staff person to receive complaints of bullying. The policy must be available on the school's website and posted in every classroom. All Pennsylvania public schools must provide a copy of its anti-bullying policy to the Office for Safe Schools every year, and shall review their policy every three years. Additionally, the district must conduct an annual review of that policy with students.[103] District administration are required to annually provide the following information with the district's Safe School Report: the board’s bullying policy, a report of bullying incidents in the school district, and information on the development and implementation of any bullying prevention, intervention or education programs. The Center for Schools and Communities works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Department of Education to assist schools and communities as they research, select and implement bullying prevention programs and initiatives.[104]

Education standards relating to student safety and antiharassment programs are described in the 10.3. Safety and Injury Prevention in the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Health, Safety and Physical Education.[105]


The school district offers a wide variety of clubs, activities and sports. Eligibility to participate is determined by the school board in policy. [106]

By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students in the district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, cyber charter school, charter school and those homeschooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the district's schools.[107]


  1. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education MIllersburg School District Enrollment and Projections January 2009
  2. ^ Trends in Rural School Enrollment: A Twenty Year Perspective, The Center for Rural Pennsylvania
  3. ^ American Fact Finder, US Census Bureau, 2009
  4. ^ Pennsylvania Public School Code Governance 2010
  5. ^ The Commonwealth Foundation for Public Policy Alternatives. "The Pennsylvania Project". Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
  6. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (April 2011). "Statewide Honor Roll Rankings 2011". 
  7. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (May 2010). "Statewide Honor Roll Rankings,". 
  8. ^ "". Pittsburgh Business Times. May 2007. 
  9. ^ "2009 PSSA RESULTS Millersburg Area School District,". The Morning Call. 2009. 
  10. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "MILLERSBURG AREA School District - District AYP Data Table". 
  11. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (March 15, 2011). "New 4-year Cohort Graduation Rate Calculation Now Being Implemented". 
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Millersburg Area School District Academic Achievement Report Card 2009 & 2010". 
  13. ^ "High School Graduation Rates 2007". Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children. 
  14. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (March 2011). "Millersburg Area High School - School AYP Overview". 
  15. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "2010-2011 PSSA and AYP Results". 
  16. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 14, 2010). "2010 PSSA result: Reading, Writing, Math and Science". 
  17. ^ The Morning Call, (May 2009). "Millersburg Area SHS Report 2009". 
  18. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "PSSA Math and Reading results by School 2007". 
  19. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. 2009 "PSSAs: Reading, Math, Writing and Science Results". 2009. 
  20. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 14, 2010). "Report on Science PSSA 2010". 
  21. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (August 2008). "Report on Science PSSA 2008". 
  22. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Pennsylvania College Remediation Report". 
  23. ^ National Center for Education Statistics
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  25. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education (October 25, 2002). "Pennsylvania Code §4.24 (a) High school graduation requirements". 
  26. ^ Millersburg Area School District Administration (2011). "Millersburg Area School District Student Graduation Project Handbook". 
  27. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 2011). "Pennsylvania Keystone Exams Overview". 
  28. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "Dual Enrollment Guidelines". 
  29. ^ "Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement". Retrieved March 2010. 
  30. ^ Millersburg Area School District Administration. "Millersburg Area School District programs". 
  31. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "MILLERSBURG AREA Middle School - School AYP Overview". 
  32. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "MILLERSBURG AREA Middle School - School AYP Data Table". 
  33. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Millersburg Area Middle School Academic Achievement Report Card 2010". 
  34. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education. "PSSA Math and Reading Results 2009". 
  35. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2008). "The 2008 PSSA Science State Level Proficiency Results by Grade and State Total (Full Academic Year)". 
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  38. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "LENKERVILLE EL SCHOOL - School AYP Overview". 
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  43. ^ 2009-10 Executive Budget Facts Pennsylvania School District Consolidation, Edward Rendell, Governor and Mary Soderberg, Secretary of the Budget. February 2009
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  45. ^ The Center for Rural Pennsylvania (October 2009). "Research Analyzes Rural School District Enrollment and Building Capacity". 
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  55. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2009). "Gifted Students as Percentage of Total Enrollment by School District/Charter School". 
  56. ^ Millersburg Area School Board (February 16, 2010). "MIllersburg Area School District Gifted Education Policy 114". 
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  59. ^ Millersburg Area School District Teachers' Union Contract
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  67. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (June 30, 2011). "Basic Education Funding 2011-2012 Fiscal Year". 
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  72. ^ Accountability Block Grant Mid Year report
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  74. ^ Dauphin County ARRA FUNDING Report
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  77. ^ U.S. Department of Education (March 29, 2010). "Race to the Top Fund". 
  78. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2008). "Common Cents program - Making Every Dollar Count". 
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  80. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2004). "Act 511 Tax Report". 
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  82. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Report (2009). "Real Estate Tax Millage by School District,". 
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  84. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education 2010-11 Act 1 of 2006 Referendum Exception Guidelines.
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  86. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "Special Session Act 1 of 2006 the Taxpayer Relief Act information". 
  87. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (April 2011). "Report on Exceptions". 
  88. ^ SSAct1_Act1 Referendum Exceptions Report 2010-2011 April 2010
  89. ^ Scarcella, Frank and Pursell, Tricia, Local school tax assessments exceed state averages. The Daily Item, May 25, 2010
  90. ^ Act1 Resolutions adopted by School Districts in 2007
  91. ^ Tax Relief per Homestead 2009, Pennsylvania Department of Education Report May 1, 2009
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  97. ^ Millersburg School District Wellness policy 246
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  99. ^ Nutrition Standards for Competitive Foods in Pennsylvania Schools for the School Nutrition Incentive, Pennsylvania Department of Education — Division of Food and Nutrition. July 2008
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  101. ^ Pennsylvania Safe Schools Online - School Safety Reports
  102. ^ Millersburg School Board Policy 249
  103. ^ Regular Session 2007-2008 House Bill 1067, Act 61 Section 6 page 8
  104. ^ Center for Safe Schools of Pennsylvania, Bullying Prevention advisory
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