Tentative Date Set to Officially End Memphis City Schools

Tentative Date Set to Officially End Memphis City Schools

No more Memphis City Schools. The Unified School Board tentatively agreed to shut down MCS on July 1st at Tuesday night's meeting.
MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - No more Memphis City Schools. The Unified School Board tentatively agreed to shut down MCS on July 1st at Tuesday night's meeting.

Valerie Matthews has two kids in Memphis City Schools. "Memphis City Schools has been good to me and my children," she says, "They attend John P. Freeman optional school."

Matthews says she feels a sense of pride every time she walks through the doors at the MCS Board of Education.

"To look at the people who have come through Memphis City Schools - celebrities, those who work hard in the community, people like me who are in education because of the education that we received in Memphis City Schools - we've done a great job and we'll continue to do so."

The pride she feels will be in the form of memories, because this summer the final bell will ring on the Memphis City Schools district.

Unified School Board Member Kenneth Whalum Jr. says the tragic end of MCS stems from the resolution the school board tentatively approved that will officially end Memphis City Schools.

"A majority black school board and majority black voting populace decided we can't educate our children, y'all do it."

If the resolution passes come July 1st, Memphis City Schools will fade to black. Out of that darkness will be one district to teach them all.

Still, Matthews says, "I'm confident we will continue to provide a wonderful educational opportunity to our students in the new Shelby County Schools."

Whalum is confident too, yet disappointed.

"Memphis City Schools was born in 1849 in the midst of slavery. It is just tragically ironic that the descendents of slaves are the ones who killed the baby," he says. "Somebody decided it was too hard to educate our children. We abandoned them, we walked away from them, put them on the doorstep of someone else and said, 'You educate them.'"

The school board votes next Tuesday.

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