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MSCS recommends revoking charters for seven district schools; 3 of which are 'priority schools' two years in a row

The recommendations were made Monday by the district’s assistant superintendent of charter schools. 3 of the 7 schools made the list for the second consecutive year.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Seven Memphis-Shelby County Schools are currently recommended to have their charters revoked after the Tennessee Department of Education designated them "priority schools."

"Priority schools" are in the bottom 5% of schools across Tennessee for academic performance. 

"It’s not a good feeling," Natoria Carpenter, one parent awaiting a final decision on the matter, said. 

Under state law, the school board is required to revoke the charters of schools that are deemed "priority two consecutive times." 

Three of the seven schools made the list for the second year in a row. These include Freedom Preparatory Academy Westwood Elementary at Parkrose, Granville T. Woods Academy of Innovation Charter School and Memphis Delta Preparatory.

“We're always talking about revoking the charter of charter schools because they not up to par — doing what they’re supposed to do," Carpenter said. "But what about the SCS schools that have failed our kids for decades and decades? We never look at those schools."

For schools that make the list for the first time this year, the school board can potentially revoke their charters, but it is not a requirement. 

Four schools made the list for the first time including KIPP Memphis Academy Middle, KIPP Memphis Collegiate Middle, Arrow Academy of Excellence and Memphis Business Academy Hickory Hill Middle School.

As it concerns KIPP, Carpenter made clear she feels the district hasn't even given the school (which she says is under new leadership) time to try and perfect reforms. 

“You haven’t even gave him the opportunity to get it right," she said.

“If they playing tug of war with the kids," Carpenter said. "If my child got to leave this failing school and go to another failing school, we gonna be in this same limbo again."

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