The Hopson Plan and What It Portends for the Schools

The SCS superintendent would keep all unincorporated areas in the unified system as well as four suburban school buildings — three in Germantown, one in Millington.

Posted by Jackson Baker on Fri, Oct 25, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Superintendent Dorsey Hopson
  • Superintendent Dorsey Hopson
The Shelby County school controversy moved a conspicuous step closer to conclusion this week, with superintendent Dorsey Hopson’s presentation at a Tuesday night meeting of the unified Shelby County Schools board of a plan regarding two hitherto unresolved matters: what to do with students in unincorporated Shelby County and what to do with school buildings in the six municipalities that will be setting up independent school systems, perhaps as early as August 2014.


Hopson’s plan is based on the assumptions(1) that possession is nine-tenths of the law and that the SCS board is the legal owner of all of the county’s buildings) and (2) that the unified county board is required by state law to teach all students not otherwise accounted for in a school district. Under the plan, students in the county’s unincorporated areas would be the responsibility of SCS, and, as a corollary to that, three Germantown schools and one in Millington would remain in the unified system.

Clearly, the superintendent’s wish to see to the long-term solvency of the unified SCS was a major factor in his thinking. Each student from an unincorporated area brings ADA (Average Daily Attendance) allotments from the state, and partisans of the unified district contend that the new municipal system would at some point become unwilling to cater to these students as their facilities filled up, putting the issue of potential and costly new construction front and center.


The plan seemed to suit a majority of the seven-member SCS board, which will formally vote on it Monday night, and it met with preliminary approval from several municipal mayors, who were gratified that their claim on school properties has at last been acknowledged.


But Germantown mayor Sharon Goldsworthy heatedly objects to the inclusion of Germantown Elementary, Germantown Middle, and Germantown High School within SCS’s purview — their inclusion based on the fact that all these schools, like Lucy Elementary in Millington, comprise a student majority from unincorporated areas.The kind of united front that in the past has led to legislative action on behalf of the suburbs in Nashville, however, has apparently been broken


If the plan passes muster with the board on Monday night, the stage is set for action on costing out the transfer of school properties. The board is thought to prefer a lease agreement with the municipalities at something well above a token rate.


Before the board meets on Monday, the Shelby County Commission will probably have considered a motion by suburban Republican member Chris Thomas to drop the current litigation against the municipalities on grounds that it is now irrelevant, but that is not likely to happen until a final agreement is signed and sealed.


Thomas’ motion was discussed by the Commission’s general government committee on Wednesday and was objeccted to a an apparent majority of those present. And a majority of 7 members — six Democrats and Republican Mike Ritz — seem destined to oppose it if is placed on the agenda. Commission chairman James Harvey, also a Democrat, may vote with Thomas and four other Republicans to sustain it.

The remaining active portion of the litigation concerns the Commission argument that creation of suburban municipal-school systems in Germantown, Collierville, Bartlett, Arlington, Lakeland, and Millington will foster re-segregation and is thereby unconstitutional.

Thomas premises his resolution on the theory that the SCS board has indicated its decision on remaining aspects of the school-merger controversy would not be based on the resegregation claim. Sources in the Commission majority, however, see that aspect of litigation as leverage as negotiation wend their way to a result and express the view that abandonment of if would be a premature folly.

Presiding federal judge Hardy Mays has granted a fresh 60-day extension of his working deadline to see an agreement reached.

Meanwhile, school board elections will be held in several of the suburbs on Thusday, November 7. [Note: Election date corrected from earlier version of post].

Comments (88)

Showing 1-25 of 88

Hopson is on point: SCS owns those buildings and if the MSDs want to use them, a suitable negotiation can commence. Also, the Commission should NOT withdraw their lawsuit until all Is are dotted and all Ts are crossed, lest they lose leverage. I see nothing wrong with Hopson's plan or the Commission's suit, as this point.

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Posted by LeftWingCracker on 10/25/2013 at 1:00 PM

Lawyers love leverage (real or perceived).

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Posted by tomguleff on 10/25/2013 at 1:19 PM

@LWC,

If SCS were to split into two special school districts (call them Shelby County West and Shelby County East), effectively ending the need for a SCS to exist, then what happens to the buildings? If that were to happen, there would be no SCS board and no SCS entity. Who gets paid for the transfer of buildings to the two special districts? SCS would no longer exist, so who collects cash for selling those buildings to the new districts? I think you get the point for why precedent says that school buildings paid for by all the county residents are NOT owned by any school district in the traditional sense of the word.

SCS doesn't own the buildings, never has.

The only reason the suburbs may agree to some sort of deal is to avoid wasting any more money on litigation, because we would prefer to spend our money on schools, not lawyers if at all possible.

On the Equal Protection lawsuit, I'm glad to see the SCC is finally admitting that they don't give two monkey s***s about resegregation, which we knew all along. The only thing they care about is leverage for negotiation.

The good news is, this is all going to be settled before too long. From what I'm hearing there will still be some battles over the buildings in Germantown. We have precedent on our side if we choose to fight it, and we also have some negotiating leverage there as well. Does SCS want to operate schools in a city where we the city could do such things as require all school buses have seat belts, or require public vehicles carry no more than 20 people at a time for safety reasons, or require that all school property during school hours have a certain level of security staff per student due to concerns over the recent rash of school shootings, or require certain level of inspections and upkeep on school buildings due to asthetic concerns within the city (GES, GMS, and GHS are 3 of the buildings in need of most repair), or require that SCS lease Red Devil Field and the Field House (which are city property to my understanding) in order to use them? If the Germantown leaders want to play hard ball, they could easily make SCS say uncle over this issue. There are plenty of ways Germantown could make life very difficult and costly on SCS if they want to operate schools within our city's borders. After all, since they would be within our borders, they'd have to comply with any laws or taxes we chose to enact that related to property/vehicles/etc. within our borders.

The irony in it all is that the SCC is ONLY going to drop a resegregation lawsuit if the parties involved agree to a plan that would increase segregation in the county's schools. Makes no sense, unless this lawsuit about color is about the color green and no other color. Will any of the local media ask the SCC members this hard hitting question? Probably not, but I'd love to see someone like Ritz asked that question on BTH. Jackson, would you be willing to ask that question? It's a very logical question, and I'd love to hear the explanation. Seeing Ritz squirm is fun.

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Posted by GroveReb84 on 10/25/2013 at 2:16 PM

Just for reference, here are the demographic splits for GHS and HHS in Germantown today according to the latest state report card:

GHS;
African American - 51.9%
White - 39.0%
Other - 9.1%

HHS:
African American - 20.6%
White - 67.4%
Other - 12.0%

Those are both fairly diverse school populations. What SCS is proposing would take GHS and make it more like 75% black, 15% white, 10% other while making Houston High School something like 85% white, 5% black, and 10% other.

And THIS is the plan that the anti-segregationists are hoping to see for them to be willing to drop a desegregation claim? Not the one that keeps the existing demogrpahics just as they are today? And no one has had the nerve to ask any of the SCC lawsuit supporters this question yet?

For the record, I can live with the SCS proposal if it's what we have to do in Germantown to get this thing settled. We'll make due and have great schools, but the SCC needs to be called out for their motives. They spent 2-3 years calling the suburbs out for our motives, but when it came to nut cutting time, the SCC stated motive (not the suburban stated motive) is the one that is being proven to be total BS.

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Posted by GroveReb84 on 10/25/2013 at 2:31 PM

GroveReb84

As usual, you are wrong on this issue. First of all, the schools are for the education of all of the students that reside in the SCS. Those schools will remain, with the purpose that they were built for, in the SCS. No judge is going to kick out students that were and still remain a part of the SCS.

As for Germantown making it hard on the SCS, that is pure bullshit. Trap laws, such as the ones you are speaking about would be deemed unconstitutional before they are even implemented. The states sets the parameters on the conditions of schools and safety, the muni's cannot contravene those laws.

As for fostering segregation, you also fall flat n your face. The SCS, as constituted, will remain the same except for what the muni's independently did, opt for msds. Legally, that leaves the children from the unincorporated portions of the county where they belong and were originally, with the SCS. When it comes to re-segregation, just the fact that the munis want to keep the kids from these areas shows that it is more economics than race diversity. If that were to happen, then essentially, there was no need to break away from the SCS in the first place. To say that you don't want the proportional representation of the unified SCS BOE shows prejudice on your part. Yes, the unified BOE is mostly black. Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1965, preferences for a different administration is not a valid reason to discriminate of cause disparate impact on protected minorities. Feel good that the CC or any other citizen/civic group didn't file a complaint regarding the msds under the civil rights act. If filed, there is a very good chance that you would lose. I say this because of the Wake County N.C. complaint; If you care to look it up, the plaintiffs, Naacp et al, won.

Is Germantown also prepared to pay the heavy expenses associated with educating students with disabilities? This can be terribly expensive. Right now, the SCS handles these municipal kids under agreement. What would happen if the SCS no longer are willing to do this. Not only would you have to hire specialists, and they are not cheap, you would have to spend as much as 40, to 80,000 per year on one child, depending on the severity of that child's disability.

Not only will you lose the ADA funding, but you will also lose federal funding because the majority of the unincorporated kids come from families that are below the poverty line.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/25/2013 at 3:56 PM

Does the County Commission or Memphis city government have any legal standing or authority to pursue a school segregation lawsuit against a school district? It seems to me that all of the old desegregation suits were filed in the names of specific children such as Northcross vs. the Board of Education in Memphis and Robinson vs. the Board of Education in Shelby County. I'm not a lawyer and don't know the answer. I would like to see a news reporter explore that issue.
I think any negotiation on what school district operates what buildings and serves what children has to be between two school boards. Shelby County has a board and a superintendent. But at this point there are no municipal boards or municipal superintendents. At this point, the county board can adopt whatever policy or proposed policy it wants to pursue but nothing can really be settled until other school boards and other superintendents are in place.

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Posted by jcov40 on 10/25/2013 at 5:00 PM

GroveReb84

The fact that Hopson is familiar with education and is a lawyer, the BOE will give him wide latitude when it comes to decisions regarding the SCS and the munis.

Hopson is also using reverse strategy when it comes to the 4 schools that will still be in the SCS. Children that stay in those munis will be able to still go to the SCS Schools as per the new transfer law. Remember, even though you got an overwhelming vote for the msds, it was not 100%. Those ten or more percent that voted against it will be able to keep their children in either one of the four schools.

When I predicted what was going to happen in regards to the schools and the students, you, Grove, and your whole cabal thought that it was funny. As you can see, I am not as funny as you seem to think.

The other thing, two or more msds form partnerships on certain areas will not work legally either. As a msd, you are a singular municipal school district. If you and other msds forge agreements in certain areas that, in fact, make you an unauthorized SSD, you are violating the law. If you want to act like a SSD, then declare it, follow the law, countywide referendum, with approval from each city in the county, or approval from the county commission ( unanimous consent).

Be careful Grove for what you push for. Things can be made a lot worse for you than the SCS.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/25/2013 at 5:11 PM

Jcov40

A lawsuit can be filed by anyone, including civic groups. The SCC has a duty to follow, not only the laws of Shelby, the state, but also the Federal Constitution and its laws. So, yes, it has the right to challenge the constitutionality of any law that it feels goes against the rights of its citizens that they represent.

The proposal by Hopson going before the BOE is not a negotiation agreement. It is the policy of the SCS and has nothing to do with whatever the munis do. Hopson is saying that the SCS will keep the kids from unincorporated areas of the county and keep some schools, period. That is not open to negotiation. The proposal says that the price of either selling or leasing the other schools is what is going to happen. What that final price will be is open to discussion, but, not what the SCS will or will not do. It is all perfectly legal. Weather the munis have a board in place or not has no bearing on this.

It is the same if those parents of children that voted against the msds choose to keep their children in those 4 schools under the auspices of the SCS, the muni BOE's will have no input on that. Those parents can choose according to the new transfer law of Tennessee.

So, please do check it out, you will find that I am again correct on this issue.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/25/2013 at 5:44 PM

Jcov40

It is funny that you ask a question, get an answer, however, you don't like the answer. I can see if, after receiving the answer, you don't agree. If that is the case, then you should look it up yourself and refute the answer given.

All of you operate the same way. If you get information that you don't like, it doesn't matter if it is true, you still dislike it. That is about as juvenile as it gets. You are entitled to your own opinions, but, you are not entitled to your own facts.

Anyone has standing to file suit over constitutional issues if it harms them or if it harms anyone that falls under their umbrella as a governmental or civic group.

Complaints under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1965 has different criteria of proof and standards than a lawsuit filed in Federal Court. Federal Courts are courts of equity. Complaints filed through the Office of Civil Rights are administrative. There is a big difference. One, Federal, is about rights and restoring equity and the other is about the rules for getting and maintaining Federal Funding. One can lose Federal Funding under different criteria than in Federal Court. A person has 180 days to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights after discovering a violation or after a court has made its final ruling. A court can rule in favor of of an entity, yet that entity can still lose its federal funding under the Federal Civil Rights Statues.

There is no law that compels the SCS to negotiate with anyone. The SCS is charged with operation and maintenance of the Shelby County Schools. That doesn't mean that the decisions they make must be in conjunction with whatever msd that comes along.

In the case of the school buildings, 9/10 of the law is ownership. Right now, the SCS is the trustee for all of the county schools. Irrespective of what any msd wants, it is only up to the trustee of the schools to decide which schools it wants to keep, which ones it wants to lease, sell, and at what price. At this point in time, the SCS has the law on their side. Prior court rulings in Tennessee has shown that as long as school buildings are used for the purpose that they were intended, they will not be taken. The 4 schools in question will be used for the purpose that they were intended.

Cooperative agreements between two school districts are legal, however, these agreements can't be so inclusive that they change the meaning of an msd to that of an ssd. You can't merge 75% of the functions of a msd with other msds and still be a singular msd. You then act like and ssd, so you must meet the criteria laid down by the state as an ssd. You cannot have one supt to run two or more msds. That alone, makes them an ssd and not a msd. It is a thin line, but, I believe that Hopson, being a lawyer and very familiar with the functions of a school district knows the difference.

These are my opinions culled from what I have read and with consultation of various legal minds. If anyone don't agree, feel free to refute any of what I have posted.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/26/2013 at 7:33 AM

Jackson, the election day for muni school boards is November 7.

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Posted by Good Habits on 10/26/2013 at 7:44 AM

It is of no consequence to the SCS when the muni school board elections are or who wins. This will have no impact on the decisions that the SCS makes in relationship to running their school district.

Any decisions that are made by the subsequent elected various school boards will not affect the thoughts, votes and the way the SCS goes forward.

The pending lawsuit, negotiations and possible agreements made between the SCC and the muni's will not affect the policies that the SCS put forth in relation to the operation of the SCS Schools. Policies that affect the operation of SCS will be theirs to make; the County Commission cannot order the SCS, and independent board, on what to do or accept.

Hopson will look out for the best interest of the SCS over the wishes of both, the county commission and the msds.

The pressure that the state can try to exercise against the SCS will not be forthcoming. They have done all that they think they can legally get away with. That is why they have had no input on the disposition of the schools in question.

Daresay, if pressure is exerted on the SCS by the state, the SCS will, with the aid of the county commission exert pressure on the various munis.

It seems as though the munis that want msds should start looking at where they are going to educate their kids and figure out how to pay for it. Millington, Arlington, Lakeland are the most vulnerable. Actually Germantown is somewhat vulnerable also because of the lack of growth, birth rate and availability of school age kids.

Good luck!

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/26/2013 at 10:45 AM

So, the Germantown district uses the same argument that SCS is using, which is that they need the buildings to educate all of the children in Germantown. It doesn't matter that that half of them go to private schools, Germantown Municipal district will still need the capacity. Isn't that the same argument that SCS is making? Sounds like it to me.

SCS will then see the wisdom of the argument and transfer the buildings to Germantown Muni.

What's the problem?

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Posted by Eeyore on 10/26/2013 at 10:48 AM

The Shelby County school controversy moved a conspicuous step closer to conclusion this week,
Really, Jackson? You think this brought it closer to conclusion?

Hopson’s plan is based on the assumptions(1) that possession is nine-tenths of the law and that the SCS board is the legal owner of all of the county’s buildings

Um... I beg to differ. His assumption is based on the fact that the munis DO get the buildings and he is proposing that SCS keeps four schools based on need. The major flaw is that he better close schools and fast (not legally possible) since the former MCS schools are STILL 25% under utilized.

Commission argument that creation of suburban municipal-school systems in Germantown, Collierville, Bartlett, Arlington, Lakeland, and Millington will foster re-segregation ...

Yep, that is the basis for the lawsuit, but the proposal from the school board now creates a lower diversity for Gtown schools than the Gtown proposal. So go defend that in court!

Hobson's proposal hurts the lawsuit and the admission that a majority of the munis will get the buildings only confirms current precedent.

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Posted by homersimpson on 10/26/2013 at 11:49 AM

Eeyore

No, that is not the same argument. That is only the spin that Germantown puts on it. The difference is that the schools in question have been and are still in the use of the Shelby County Schools. The Trustee that controls these schools says that the current operator, the SCS needs to keep these schools filled with kids from the unincorporated areas of the county. They already have them, have had them, so, first priority should lie with the entity that is already there.

The laws that enable the establishment of msds in Tennessee says that the muni wishing to operate municipal school district must acquire proper facilities in which to house its students. If what they want is already being used, they would have to try eminent domain to get them. The only problem is that eminent domain cannot be used against a superior government entity. A muni cannot use eminent domain to take county owned buildings.

Mark Norris has already alluded that the munis may have to build their own schools. Now, if those schools would lay empty after the muni's form their school districts, they would have a valid argument to take them, but, with the pending plan of the SCS, that is not the case. The SCS is not trying to keep all of the schools (the ones that they have no need for).

It is the same situation with the county building located within Memphis. Memphis can't take that public building, as long as the county has use of it. There is no difference.

Let us go even deeper. Let us say, for argument, that the msds take all of the unincorporated area kids. They form sharing agreements, etc. What you have is the same as you had before, except for the administration. that shows that the only reason for msds is not to be controlled by the majority African American Shelby County School Board. So, in essence all they are trying to do is keep from being under majority black administration. Under the Civil Rights Acts of 1965, Title VI, that reason is not sufficient to re-segregate schools and cause disparate impact on minorities that live in the unincorporated areas. Even if this pending lawsuit is won by the muni's, a subsequent complaint filed with the Office of Civil Rights will see the muni's lose federal funding. Nowhere has the old MCS BOE or just the thought of having a county unified BOE with majority black representation has it been found to be incompetent. So, consequently, the only reason for forming msds would be because of prejudice against qualified black members in the majority of a county-wide school district. Just because the munis would proclaim that the unified board would be incompetent does not make it so.

So far, Memphis has not gone that far, but, if the munis continue to try to get what it does not deserve, someone in Memphis is going to get pissed off and file that complaint with the Office of Civil Rights. It is very easy, the complainant is not divulged until there is a finding by the Office of Civil Rights and that department files charges based on the initial complaint. Also, there is no charge what-so-ever for filing this complaint. All investtigations and/or charges are borne by the federals. It would behoove the munis to be as quiet as possible in their endeavor and "let sleeping dogs lie".

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/26/2013 at 12:07 PM

Good Habits, you are correct about the municipalities' election date for SBs. Note correction in text. And thanks.

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Posted by Jackson Baker on 10/26/2013 at 12:27 PM

Homer, you make an interesting observation about the effect of the Hopson plan on the desegregatoin aspect of the ongoing litigation. But I'm not sure you get the drift. The plan suits the Commission majority just fine, and acceptance by the munis of it (along with some satisfactory resolution of the building-costs matter) would, from the Commission's point of view, be a good trade for dropping the suit.

That's why it's likely the Commission majority won't vote to drop the suit before the Hopson plan is formally adopted. It would be giving away leverage with the munis.

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Posted by Jackson Baker on 10/26/2013 at 12:58 PM

Homersimpso

You are totally wrong in your assessment.

The SCS has never made an official assumption that it will keep all of the schools. The SCS has always taken the position that it has first choice over the schools.

Closing schools in other parts of Memphis makes no difference in what the SCS says its needs. If one would assume, then let Memphis take all of the suburban schools and close schools in the inner city and let the munis have those inner city schools that are closed. There is nothing in law or policy that says the SCS has to close schools in particular areas before it can utilize schools in other areas. If there is, please state it? The only applicable law to schools is that they be used for the purpose intended before they can be considered surplus.

As far as lack of diversity, it is still valid. The SCS didn't create the lack of diversity that the msds will cause, those proposed msds are the ones that are limiting diversity by breaking away from a diverse school district to form msds because they dislike the composition of the elected unified county BOE (mostly African American). The munis are the ones fostering re-segregation by their actions, while, the SCS is standing pat as it always was. The kids that live in unincorporated areas belong to the SCS by law. Any agreement that the munis want to make in educating those children leaves the SCS in future peril should those munis decide they no longer want those kids from the unincorporated areas. If the munis want an agreement on those kids forever, then, you would at least have a semblance of an argument. The munis don't want to do that.

As far as Hopson is concerned, after keeping the schools that he say he needs, he is willing to give and/or lease the other property to the munis at a nominal rate. It seems as though the BOE is the one that want more. That is the only argument that the munis have.

This strategy employed by Hopson is sweet. It actually means that the munis will have to work to keep all of the students in its municipalities. It might not be effective for elementary kids, but, for jr high and especially high schoolers, they will have a lot to say where they want to go to school, Germantown middle or high or to some other facility with no history. brilliant move. It also assures that the kids from the unincorporated areas will choose to stay with the SCS.

Homersimpson, regardless of how you try to frame it, you will lose this argument.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/26/2013 at 1:11 PM

Jackson,
Let's not forget the munis have support in Nashville. I believe while most munis are getting exactly what they want, they may all hold out in unison and what for Nashville to intervene.

Last year Nashville made it much easier for a parent to transfer from one LEA to another without approval from the zoned muni. Laying "claim" to the unincorporated children is nothing more than bluster.

I would suggest an early registration for Gtown. I do it in Feb for private school. I would think a great number of the children in Gtown district that are not within the city would still prefer the new Gtown system over the SCS. Shall we wager?

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Posted by homersimpson on 10/26/2013 at 1:57 PM

This mess can be easily resolved by carving out MSD "Taxing Districts" to include the geographic municipal boundaries PLUS an adjacent area of unincorporated Shelby County whose students attend a particular Muni school. The properties in the MSD "Taxing District" would be assessed and would pay school taxes to support that muni's school district. The County school tax will be eliminated and all school districts will assess their own school taxes, including SCS. The Shelby County Trustee could continue to collect all property taxes for all districts.

The schools located within a district's geographic boundaries would become the property of that district and they would assume responsibility for all costs, including existing bond liabilities, for those structures.

Does this make too much sense for Tennessee?

This is how it's done in most civilized states.

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Posted by JuliusJones on 10/26/2013 at 2:13 PM

JJ

Common Sense in Memphis. Surely you jest.

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Posted by homersimpson on 10/26/2013 at 2:24 PM

OTP

It won't matter that SCS is using the buildings. If that were true, they would make the same argument for all of the buildings, but they aren't. Why? Because, they reason, they need buildings only for the students within the SCS area. Therefore, G'town Muni would also need buildings for students within the G'town Muni district.


It's very straightforward. I like it. Well done, Hobson.

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Posted by Eeyore on 10/26/2013 at 2:55 PM

Jackson

The same can be said for your take on this. If the district MUST have the capacity, then there is nothing to negotiate about. No one questions how many school aged children there are in G'town. It's in the census. Using those numbers, clearly G'town will need the capacity for all of the students in the district, and if the student goes elsewhere, then the extra capacity could be filled with the next person in line.

See how easy that is?

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Posted by Eeyore on 10/26/2013 at 3:03 PM

Eeyore

Germantown and any other msd would have to take a back seat when it comes to school buildings that are already in use. Shelby County School District is the constitutional entity charged with the default position of having to educate all of the children that reside in Shelby County. Please read the first opinion by Judge Mayes on the surrender of the MCS. He made that plain and the muni's didn't appeal this. Msds and other forms of schools are a creature of the legislature and cannot contravene the constitution. Msds, charters, etc can be abolished and banned by a simple vote of the legislature, the one now sitting or by any other subsequent one. It cannot, by a simple vote, change the county school districts as the ones with ultimate responsibility for education of the children that reside in the respective counties.

There are no schools districts in Tennessee that have taxing power. The ability to levy taxes reside with the state, with limited power delegated to the county. Municipalities can only levy property taxes within their own city limits and a certain percentage of sales taxes. Julius, your little scheme will not work.

Eeyore, you need to read the law that lifts the ban on msds and the enabling legislation. It doesn't say anything about a muni having the power to force capacity for their students. It does say that the muni is responsible for having suitable facilities to house their students. that is construed to mean that if facilities aren't already available, then it is up to the muni to do what they need to do to acquire facilities. Remember, the munis' opted out of the SCS and decided to go it alone, so, it is up to them to meet the requirements of operating a msd.

If the msds cannot have adequate facilities for their students, then, a msd cannot be operated until they meet all of the necessary criteria. I read both, the law and the enabling legislation; it is evident that you and most of the others have not. Before you try to argue your point, don't you think you should read the law and the enabling legislation. In oder for any muni to operate a msd, they must meet all of the requirements. Read the laws.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 10/26/2013 at 4:59 PM

So, as I read "the LAW", G'town has just oodles of school aged children, all of which are required to be educated. REQUIRED I SAY. And since there is a requirement, according to Hobson, then the capacity must exist. Since G'town has all of these school aged children within it's borders, then it will need the buildings within it's borders. Since the SCS is there to educate any child not already covered by some other institution, then, as the last resort, it will come last in line. That makes lots of sense. I mean, after all, the schools were built for the children in the area in which the school exist, and there are children in these areas, and they need schools, and the G'town muni District is willing to take all of the children within it's district, then these buildings will not be needed by SCS.

Nope, G'town doesn't take a "back seat" because it's the default district. SCS is the last resort district. That's what the law says. If G'town wasn't willing to educate the children within it's district, then, by law, SCS must do so. That's what the law says. Not the other way around.

There are slightly over 9,000 school aged children in G'town.

That seems so simple. Irrefutable. Thanks for explaining that to us, Mr. Hobson Esq.

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Posted by Eeyore on 10/26/2013 at 6:34 PM

You interpretation of the law is subject of considerable question. Not to mention that I have faith that laws can and will be changed.

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Posted by homersimpson on 10/26/2013 at 7:03 PM
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