Shelby Co. Commission to vote on city, county schools merger - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Shelby Co. Commission to vote on city, county schools merger

(WMC-TV) - Monday, Shelby County Commissioners will finalize the new unified school district maps and begin the process of appointing interim commissioners to the countywide school district.

"Monday is a big day," said Shelby County Commission Chairman Pro Tem Mike Carpenter.

The commission will vote whether or not to approve the October 1 Memphis and Shelby County Schools merger.

Carpenter hopes the deal will pass without a battle.

"The fact both school systems have signed off on that should give it smooth sailing," he said.

There are also two other big votes, including the approval of the new countywide school map.  Though the map vote is more formality than debate, the repercussions are vast.

"We had to provide proportionate representation to the citizens of Memphis who make up roughly 70 percent of the people of Shelby County," said Carpenter.

District 1 stretches from the Mississippi River to the edge of East Memphis.  District 2 covers North Memphis and Frayser.  District 3 covers the northern portion of the county.  District 4 includes the southeast corner of the county.  District 5 includes the Hickory Hill area.  District 6 includes Whitehaven.  And District 7 covers East Memphis.

Some students may have to switch schools.

"I think that's all up in the air at this point," said Carpenter.

The Shelby County Commission must also lay out the blueprint to appoint interim countywide school board commissioners, a process they began earlier this year before an injunction left 60 finalists in limbo.

"Staff is calling those finalists and asking them if they are interested still in light of the new districts," said Carpenter.

New applicants can apply starting Tuesday.  Interviews are September 7 and appointments on September 12.

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