Muscogee county school board approves high school changes - WRBL

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Muscogee county school board approves high school changes

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COLUMBUS, Ga. -

The Muscogee County school board voted unanimously Monday night to approve the proposed high school changes. The focus now shifts to implementation and if staff members will be laid off.

The high school changes, which will begin next school year, include reducing high school staff by about 15%. Superintendent David Lewis says he hopes to make these cuts through attrition. but there's uncertainty about whether attrition will be able to cover the staff reduction. If not, there will be layoffs. Last year, the attrition numbers were finalized around mid-June.

“It’s certainly my commitment and our commitment to our people to let them know as soon as possible once we have definitive numbers,” says Lewis.

Lewis says there have been several concerns about the new model. He wants to emphasize to parents that it’s a flexible model for graduation, saying the changes afford 28 credits for graduation while the state requirement is 23. He also says moving from an eight period to seven period schedule will put the district in line with many schools across the nation.

“This is not a new model, it has been implemented throughout the country, and in fact some of the nation's top high schools are actually on this type of model so going to 7 periods is not going to be detrimental in terms of opportunities for students,” says Lewis.

Superintendent Lewis says the approval of the scheduling changes means the district will avoid furloughs. Last year was the first time in 5 years the district did not have a furlough day.

The administration says the current high school schedule is the most expensive scheduling structure a high school can have. With the district $10 million in the red for next fiscal year, the changes are expected to save the district $4 million dollars.

At Monday night’s board meeting, the board also approved Superintendent Lewis' recommendation to divide the district into 3 regions. Lewis says this change will not affect the budget.

David Hurst

David Hurst, a graduate of the Univ. of Georgia, focuses on how your tax dollars are being spent.
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