School Board Member Requests 1 Year Delay for District Merger

School Board Member Requests 1 Year Delay for District Merger

Memphis and Shelby County schools are set to merge this fall, but now Unified School Board member Tomeka Hart wants to delay the massive merger.
MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Memphis and Shelby County schools are set to merge this fall, but now Unified School Board member Tomeka Hart wants to delay the massive merger.

"I think that's just dragging it out. I think they need to go ahead and go with the dates they have already decided on," said Germantown resident Mary Livesay.

Livesay doesn't agree Hart's request to delay the merger of Memphis and Shelby County schools for another year. In fact, the request may be impossible.

"I don't even think it's legally possible. This is the subject of a federal court order. They could not do this themselves. You would have to ask the judge to do it," said Shelby County Commissioner Steve Mulroy.

Mulroy doesn't believe the county commission or city council will agree. He says the council doesn't want to be on the hook for another $70 million a year.

One MCS parent believes some in Shelby County are against the merger. "I think that they deal with different issues in the county than they deal with in the city schools. That's one reason why our scores look different, but ultimately we're all children of Memphis," said Annabel Conrad.

Hart says her request was prompted by moves in the Tennessee legislature to eliminate the statewide ban on municipal districts, so any city could set up its own schools.

"I know simultaneously Nashville might be considering legislation which might authorize in the future a year or two from now. Some of the suburbs will split off into municipal school districts. We don't know that's going to happen," said Mulroy.

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