A company with experience working on the Island will guide the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School building committee through a $2 million dollar feasibility study that voters in all six towns approved earlier this year.

The elected high school committee voted unanimously Monday night to engage CHA Consulting of Boston as owner’s project manager for the feasibility study and schematic design phases of a new or substantially rebuilt school, with a fee not to exceed $481,719 and a completion date of Nov. 1, 2025.

“After this [vote], we will turn around and begin the process to secure an architect for essentially the rest of the project,” said Sam Hart, the high school’s administrator for the building project. 

In addition to the management fee, the CHA contract also includes up to $11,000 to provide a public website for the building project and up to $7,000 in travel reimbursements, in the event consultants need to stay on Island overnight.

Formerly known as Daedalus, Inc., CHA Consulting has supervised numerous projects on the Island, including the Martha’s Vineyard Museum and the ongoing Tisbury School renovations in Vineyard Haven, the Chilmark School air-handling system replacement and the Tabernacle roof replacement in Oak Bluffs.

The school committee’s top choice out of five companies that applied for the job, CHA was approved as owner’s project manager last week by the Massachusetts School Building Authority, which has accepted the high school into a selective building program that will reimburse up to 38 per cent of most costs.

The CHA consulting team of Amanda Sawyer, Michael Owen and Aditya Modi are set to meet with the school building committee, a group of appointees from all six Island towns, on Zoom at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Mr. Hart said.

Also Monday, the high school committee hosted a brief public hearing on the proposed $26 million operating budget for fiscal year 2025, which begins next July 1.

School officials were able to shave another $280,000 from the budget this week, following a drop in the number of students with disabilities requiring residential schooling off-Island, high school finance director Suzanne Cioffi said.

The proposed budget now is 5.82 per cent higher than last year’s, down from more than 7.5 per cent higher in the first draft.

Principal Sara Dingledy said she will continue to look for ways to save on operating expenses. The high school committee is scheduled to certify the new budget on Jan. 8.