School board will discuss plans to possibly close 21 schools - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

School board will discuss plans to possibly close 21 schools

Unified School Board will meet Tuesday night to discuss possible school closures Unified School Board will meet Tuesday night to discuss possible school closures

(WMC-TV) – The Unified School Board is meeting to discuss whether to close dozens of schools in southwest and northwest Memphis.

With the fate of 21 schools hanging in the balance, parents are anxious.

"We need schools to stay open because we've got teenagers running the streets not going to school," said Shaquita Royster, who is a concerned mother.

Parents also have concerns that when schools consolidate, those combined classes might be too large.

"There are going to be too many kids in one class. A lot of these kids need more attention," said Veronica White, a concerned parent.

Tuesday night, Superintendent Dr. Kriner Cash will unveil his plan to the school board on universal Pre-K.

Dr. Cash's plan does involve school closures.

Cash would not release preliminary details, but the Transition Planning Commission recently gave the school board a plan that would close 21 schools with an annual savings of $21 million.

Fifteen of those schools are in southwest Memphis and six are in northwest Memphis.

When Action News 5 asked parents what they would choose between keeping schools open or offering pre-k, the parents chose pre-k.

"Pre-k is more important. Yes. I think pre-k is more important," said Royster.

"I think pre-k because the younger students just starting off, they need to go ahead and start learning," said White.

The district says Cash's plan weighs heavily on promised development in the eastern part of the district.

School Board Commissioner Kevin Woods will lead a discussion on the half-cent sales tax, which is now on the ballot.

It is up for debate whether or not taxes collected will fund universal pre-k.

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