Tennessee could soon take over low-performing Hamilton County schools

Commissioner Candice McQueen (WTVC)

Education Commissioner Candice McQueen met with the Hamilton County School Board to address the counties lowest performing schools Thursday.

Watch the presentation here.

She presented a partnership of a state plan to the board for their consideration.

A Partnership Zone would be its own school district.

It would have its own leader and school board.

The five under-performing schools would become a part of it.

Those schools are Woodmore Elementary, Dalewood Middle , Brainerd High, Orchard Knob Elementary and Orchard Knob Middle.

"The reality is that schools continue to need some support and we believe that they can provide a world class education for every student and we want to be a partner in that work," Commissioner McQueen said.

She says the state and local school system will share responsibility with the state having majority rule.

Those schools would get federal and state funding and also use county money.

Senator Todd Gardenhire supports it.

"Something is not working and I don't care what they say it's not working and it's about time they stepped in and did what we're supposed to do and either take them over or work with them to help improve the situation," Gardenhire said.

Representative JoAnne Favors spoke at the regular board meeting.

She's against the partnership and said it could become a "civil rights violation".

"Because all five of the schools are in a majority black district and most of the children are black," Favors said.

Tiffanie Robinson asked JoAnne Favors if she'd spoken with Commissioner McQueen before tonight.

Favors says she did attend a meeting with her recently.

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