While a judge has approved an agreement for Hooksett to terminate its high school agreement with Manchester four years early, officials at Pinkerton Academy had no answer to how the ruling would affect the semi-public Derry high school, which has been mentioned in meetings as a possible home for Hooksett’s 550 students.
Chip Underhill, director of public relations for Pinkerton, said, “We have not talked to Hooksett in several months.”
Hooksett has been sending its high school students to Manchester for 120 years. The rift began earlier this year when the Hooksett board sued Manchester for “breach of services,” charging Manchester with having overcrowded classrooms. Manchester in turn filed an injunction to keep Hooksett from taking its students out. In talks, Pinkerton was mentioned as the only school large enough to take all of Hooksett’s students.
The agreement would leave Hooksett free to send its students to other districts after 2014, but includes a tuition raise for 2014-15 of about $2,000, raising the tuition to $10,200 per student with an annual increase of $200 after that.
The contract also obligates Hooksett to pay $781,000 for five years, covering improvements to the physical plants at Manchester’s West and Central high schools, and adds a $100,000 payment from Hooksett to Manchester for the next two years.
Charles Littlefield, superintendent of schools for School Administrative Unit (SAU) 15, which includes Auburn, Candia and Hooksett, was out of the office this week. Auburn begins tuitioning its high school students to Pinkerton this fall.