Deadline looming for Memphis City School Board

Email Syan Rhodes

Memphis City School superintendent Dr. Carol Johnson set a March 21 deadline for the Board to vote on her proposed school mergers.

During Monday night's meeting, Dr. Johnson said the mergers were not something anyone wanted and that she was sorry the district was in this predicament.

Facing a new three week deadline, parents affected by the school mergers went back before the board. Many were familiar faces, speaking at many of the many merger meetings the Board held over the last month.

"It was refreshing to see that you are parents and people like we are whose heart can be touched," said Reverend Link Generette III, an Orleans Elementary school supporter.

Walker Elementary parent Tonya Duncan said her child's school should not have been targeted in the first place, citing city documents of new developments in the area. "One is for 184 lots one is for 228 and one is for 150 certainly that's going to be more than enough to fill the school, so why is Walker being considered for being merged? We don't understand," Duncan said.

Dr. Johnson said her staff is checking with the city about that new information.

Still cuts will be made and board members hope the month of merger meetings taught parents the importance of being involved in upcoming budget battles.

"If they were active enough to come out and be concerned about the schools being closed and stress their concern to us then by all means they ought to be show the same kind of concerned to express it to the folks who hold the pocketbook," said board member Michael Hooks, Jr.

The board will have one more chance ask questions about the merger plan during an upcoming meeting with Dr. Johnson and her staff, before the vote on March 21.