MSAD #51 District Newsletter - May 2, 2024

From the Superintendent

porterOne of the important aspects of the proposed new school/one campus project that goes to voters on June 11 is the removal of all temporary space, to which we currently have 29 modular classrooms in order to accommodate enrollment expansion since 2015. Right now, 34% of all PK-8 students at MIW and GMS are learning in temporary space, mostly at MIW, with the district expending $563,836 in lease payments during the 2023-24 school year.

Starting in 2025-26, temporary space needs will begin increasing at GMS as the enrollment continues to move through the grades. Between 2025-2034, the number of PK-8 students learning in modular classrooms will climb to 52% at an annual cost of $934,000 by 2034. State aid is anticipated to offset some of the costs between 2024-29 (though not guaranteed), with a 5-year cap on state funds available for temporary space as the state expects districts to find a more permanent solution after that.
The district has already expended $3,857,039 over the last decade on temporary space leases and accompanying set up costs.

Absent a permanent plan to address enrollment growth, temporary space costs are estimated to cost an additional $6,987,796 over the next 10 years. All told, temporary space is estimated to cost MSAD 51 taxpayers $10,844,835 over the 19-year period between 2015-34, if no other solution materializes.

Information about financing the new school/one campus plan, including the tax effect, is now available. Please see Board Chair Leanne Candura's message below, along with the finance plan infographics, to learn more.

Jeff Porter

GMS 4th Grade & MIW 1st Grade Reading & Math Buddies!

Notices from the Office of the Superintendent

In case you missed it

We learned a lot of information about the specifics of the turf field. If you were unable to attend you can watch it here.

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Find all the ways MSAD #51 shares information here.


MSAD #51 Board of Directors Information

All meetings will take place at 6:00 pm in the Gyger Room at Greely High School.  For those of you unfamiliar with that room, the Gyger Room can be accessed from the GHS parking lot (the side without the electronic sign).

May 9 - District Budget Meeting

Message from the Board of Directors

Dear fellow community members,

Recently, the MSAD #51 Board of Directors reviewed the financing plan for the One Campus Project. As you may already know, the total amount of the referendum for building a new primary school and the accompanying upgrades to the campus is $53.3 million. This is the amount we are asking the community to approve on June 11. We also want to present as clearly as possible how this vote will impact you as a resident and a taxpayer.

District staff, the Board, and our financial consultants have worked hard to make sure taxpayers are not hit with the full cost of the bond in a single year. In anticipation of this project, the Board has been prudent in utilizing fund balance to give back the money to taxpayers to support this project and lessen the tax impact of this project. Also, due to the district’s favorable bond rating, our financial advisor is estimating a 4% bond rate. Our proposed tax assessment will be a gradual annual increase to the mil rate that would take effect beginning in 2026, and then decrease starting in 2031. In the first year (2026), the estimated mil rate effect for Cumberland will be 0.27 and for North Yarmouth will be 0.25, which means an increase of $27 and $25 per $100,000 of assessed value respectively. There are gradual increases from 2026-2030. The result is a total increase of $158 in Cumberland and $144 in North Yarmouth per $100,000 of assessed value in 2030. Starting in 2031, there will be gradual decreases in the mil rate impact of the debt service every year until the debt is paid off. More information is provided in the graphic below.

We understand that this doesn’t answer all questions. There are several supporting documents that we will be sharing in the coming days and weeks so that you can have more information on both the financing and the tax effect. We will also be holding two meetings specifically on the financing of this project: a virtual financing information night on May 16th, and the public hearing on May 20th. I also encourage you to reach out to me or any of my fellow Board members directly with questions.

We understand and appreciate that this is a big decision for our community. We also understand that any increase to the mil rate can impact residents in significant ways. I continue to believe that this project is the right one for Cumberland and North Yarmouth. Our community asked the board for a more affordable and sustainable solution to our growing population. The One Campus plan is over $20 million less than the plan put to voters in 2022. It also cuts ongoing operating costs significantly compared to that plan, and eliminates the payments on portable classrooms. The plan has achieved this while also providing important upgrades to campus that will make that site sustainable for the long term. The improvements will impact a broad range of our students and our community at large. We believe that this is the right investment for our Cumberland and North Yarmouth and we look forward to continuing to work to provide our voters with clear information so they can make the best decision for themselves and their families.

Thank you and please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.   

Remember you can watch our meetings on YouTube LIVE (

Meeting Dates, Agendas & Minutes
Board of Directors Meeting Videos

Budget Information 2024-25

Detailed budget information can be found on the District's website at:

District Budget Meeting Reminder

The District Budget meeting is NEXT THURSDAY, May 9 at 7:00 PM at the Greely Center for the Arts. Registration begins at 6:30 PM. You must be present to vote. Click here to review all the presentations and documents related to the budget.


School Building Project Information

For comprehensive information regarding the School Building Project, please visit the project page at:


Community Partners

Our Community Partners are strong supporters of various areas of the school.  Without them, our students would not have manyof the wonderful opportunities and experiences that they receive.

Staff Appreciation is coming up next week! 

Let's show our support for our MSAD #51 community! What can you do to help? Scan the QR code below, or visit this link to sign up:
We are also collecting donations to contribute towards a free lunch for the MSAD #51 staff. To contribute, please Venmo @Greely-PTO and include "Staff Appreciation" in the notes field.

Our Silver Graphics shop is now open!

Choose from over 50 products personalized with your child's art. Place your orders before the deadline on Friday, May 10.

MIW Read -A-Thon


Community Notices

Community Notices are not affiliated with MSAD #51.  Please contact the organization directly with any questions.  For a full listing of Community Notices, please click HERE.

Class of 2025 Plant Sale

Greely's Got Talent 2024

Class of 2027 Greely Grad Balloon Send Off


Useful Links

Employment Opportunities

MSAD #51 Website

2018-2023 Strategic Plan

District Calendar

GHS Athletics Schedule

Greely Center for the Arts Events


If you would like something included in our weekly newsletter, please send a brief write up with title along with a JPEG or PNG image of your flyer (if applicable) to Melissa Porter for approval. The deadline each week is Sunday. Any requests received after Sunday will be reviewed for possible submission in the following week's newsletter. All approved submissions will be posted on the district's website.

Not all items in this email are MSAD #51 sponsored programs. If you need more information, please contact the group or organization that is sponsoring the event.

Maine School Administrative District #51
357 Tuttle Road, PO Box 6A, Cumberland, ME 04021
Contact Us   |   207.829.4800