MCS launching public information campaign in charter debate - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

MCS launching public information campaign in charter debate

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By Jamel Major - bio | email | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Memphis City Schools is launching a campaign called "Just So You Know" to keep the public informed about the charter surrender referendum.

The program is designed to share factual information with the public from now through the March 8 referendum vote.

"What we have been doing is tracking some frequently asked questions and trying to provide answers to those questions so the public can have as much information as possible prior to the vote," said Memphis City Schools attorney Dorsey Hopson.

Memphis City Schools hired Trust Marketing and Communications Incorporated to help spread the message. The public relations firm is being paid $14,500, which comes from the Memphis City Schools Board legal budget.

"One of the criticisms that you often hear with public bodies is that we don't get enough information out to the people," said Memphis City School Board commissioner Dr. Jeff Warren. "I think one of the questions was how could this board spend public money to influence an election? One of the things you have to realize is this is a divided board on this particular issue as to whether the citizens should vote yes or no."

The information will be communicated via radio and TV public service announcements, the internet, and a series of town hall meetings.

The board said it does not want to influence anyone on how to vote, but board members are encouraging everyone to vote and understand what they are voting on.

"We're talking about educating the public to make informed decisions," said Memphis City School Board commissioner Sara Lewis. "If they don't have knowledge, don't have information, your decision may not be the best one."

A series of town hall meetings to discuss the charter surrender referendum will be held February 23 -25, and again on March 1.

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