Editorial Praises Wise County School Superintendent
Wise County's school board voted to consolidate a while back. The anti consolidators will not accept the decision. Our new Superintendent is showing leadership. The Kingsport Times writes -
Hats off to Superintendent Jeff Perry for his calm, steady leadership as a series of forums on school consolidations proceeds in Wise County.
Although the school board has already made its intention to trim the number of county high schools from six to three last month on a 5-3 vote, consolidation continues to be a controversial subject with many Wise residents.
The Wise BOE seeks to merge the student populations of Pound High School with J.J.Kelly High School in one new facility, Appalachia and Powell Valley in Big Stone Gap in another, and Coeburn and St. Paul in a third new high school.
While site locations and cost projections have yet to be determined, the BOE has indicated its desire to construct the new facilities more or less an equal distance between the affected communities if possible. But it has fallen primarily to Superintendent Perry to keep consolidation’s ardent foes from derailing a constructive discussion on what the three new proposed high schools would include. Needless to say, that’s not been an easy task. But to his credit, Perry has politely but firmly insisted on steering the forum discussions away from endlessly re-fighting the board’s consolidation vote to more productive ground.
As Perry told a group of residents at one recent forum, the goal of these public meetings is a two-way affair: it allows BOE and school officials to explain how consolidation would work, and it gives parents and other Wise Countians a chance to provide their ideas of how to make the new schools the best they can be.
But, Perry warned, if a minority continues to fight consolidation, that opportunity for a dialogue that can improve Wise schools will be lost. READ it ALL
Yes it's time to move ahead. The subject has been discussed for years. A vote was taken. Proceed sir.