Video: Columbus Schools Haven’t Signed Early College High School Memorandum

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COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) — Parents and volunteers are making sure about 15 Columbus students have a ride to the first Golden Triangle Early College High School on EMCC’s Mayhew campus.

Now, it remains unclear if the Columbus School Board will sign off on a memorandum of agreement with the new school.

Columbus Schools Superintendent Dr. Philip Hickman tells WCBI the district’s legal team is reviewing the memorandum it received “the last couple of weeks in July.”

The contract must be approved by the school board, which meets on the first day classes convene at the Early College High School.

Hickman says there are legal questions about transportation and ambiguous language about services to be paid for. The school board reviewed the memorandum Wednesday at a meeting.

Hickman tells WCBI state funding and test scores follow the students to the Early College High School but the school district is required to pay for some services. The students are not enrolled in the Columbus School District.

“One thing on the contract was that it was a five year contract, and I think in the state of Mississippi you cannot exceed four year contracts and those kind of things. So, our legal department is just kind of combing over it to see if it’s something that we can agree to legally. Then we’ll put it back in front of the board on Monday,” said Hickman.

In all, 50 freshmen will attend the school.

Planning for the new school started more than a year ago.

Lowndes County Schools Superintendent Lynn Wright says the district is still working out some minor transportation details but expects them to be resolved.

The West Point and Starkville school districts say their plans are in place and report no issues.

Noxubee County is also participating.

A grant pays the school district’s transportation costs for the first year.

Categories: Local News

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