#MCS Following the Media – 1/19/11

I start off today with something that’s not necessarily “news”. The blog Memphis School Referendum has posted a study that looks at the impact of school consolidation on home valuations. Verdict? No change in districts that have over 1700 students. De Soto realtors, don’t get your hopes up too high too soon.

Ok, yesterday didn’t hold that much news on the schools front. An election was scheduled for March 8th, which just so happens to be the date of the HD-98 election, so that saves us a little money.

The County Commission, who will have to set the Board of Education districts for either the current structure of Shelby County Schools, or the new County wide Shelby County Schools started looking at the possibility of a HUGE elected board. Commissioner Mike Ritz proposed 23 members. That seems a little high, but I’m all about letting representative democracy work so what the hey? Gonna need a new board room.

Of course, all of this talk is a bit premature, as the voting hasn’t even started, and we have no idea how Senator Mark Norris and his buddies in Nashville are going to muddy the waters. He’s indicated that he intends to pursue his legislation, even if the outcome of the current effort could lead to the system both he and City Councilman Shea Flinn prefer. Go read Jackson for more on that.

In the end, for right now at least, we’ve got an opportunity to vote as Memphians on the fate of our schools. There are still a lot of open questions, most of which have nothing to do with the political process we’re currently going through. The task for supporters, at least in my view, is to get the vote out, and start talking about what ideas we’d like to see implemented after the election.

We have an opportunity to start a county wide discussion on education. We need to take advantage of it.

Geoff Calkins: Amid the yelling about schools, let’s remember what matters
MCS Board Rejects New Compromise
Council, School Board Agree: Memphis’ Will is Paramount
Courts unlikely to force county inclusion in school charter vote
School unification: The children speak
Magnet Program Added Balance to Chattanooga School Merger
Many Reasons for Compromise Failure
Memphis City Schools Board Stands By Charter Surrender
Charter surrender referendum set for March 8
Private Schools Expect Increased Demand from Consolidation
March 8 Set for Schools Election
Date Set for Voters to Decide Fate of Memphis City Schools
New Super-Sized School Board Contemplated by Shelby County Commission
Tennessee Legislators React to School Board Vote
County Commission Wants Advisory Team For School Merger
Date Set For School Surrender Vote
It’s Official: Election Commission Sets School-Charter Referendum for March 8
Shelby County Election Commission sets school referendum for March 8
School Charter Debate: From Harsh Words to Transition Team?
Norris Lays It Out

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