Cash outlines Unified School Board's extensive agenda

Dr. Kriner Cash
Dr. Kriner Cash

(WMC-TV) - Memphis City Schools Superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash says the Unified School Board will hit the ground running in their first regular meeting Tuesday night.

"There are substantive agenda items right away," he said.

For one, Cash will present his review of two dozen Memphis charter schools that are on probation.

"One wants to support their success, but they have work to do, and so I'm not going to recommend closing them at this time," he said.

Cash said if the board supports his recommendation, he will review the charter schools' progress again at the end of the academic year.

He will also discuss plans to close Lakeview, Georgia Avenue and Graceland Elementary schools.

"Mainly because they're under-enrolled and their facility index for repairs that are needed is very high," he said.

Public hearings would come before any closures.

The Unified School Board will also get a look at Cash's plan to tighten the boot straps on retiree benefits.

"We had a really, really generous plan and it benefited all of us for a long time," Cash said. "We'd like to continue to do that, but we can't afford to do that anymore. We won't hurt retirees any more than they've been hurt, but the board will hear about where we are."

Cash will also update the board about his meeting with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

"The senior leaders will come and say, 'How are we doing? How's our investment going?' So we gave them an update on our four major strategies," he said.

Cash said Memphis City Schools satisfied requirements by implementing the new teacher evaluation formula, increasing teacher recruitment, redesigning teacher compensation, and improving the culture in schools to embrace education.

According to Cash, the big challenge moving forward is making sure the new school board embraces the initiatives of the $90 million grant.

Copyright 2011 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.