School district administrators propose closing two schools - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

School district administrators propose closing two schools

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COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

First there was talk of closing Edgewood Elementary school, then Monday night we learned that Marshall Middle school may be slated to close as well.

District Administrators say relief is coming to the Muscogee County district proposed to come in the tune of $9 million. That's the amount the district is expected to get if they adjust the number of students in classrooms and close Edgewood Elementary and Marshall Middle School.

"The funding continues to go down, down, down. We just can't afford to operate all these elementary schools," John Phillips said.

Middle schools too, for that matter. Monday night, Marshall Middle School was brought up for potential closure. Cutting the schools will cut employee positions, which will put more money in the pot for the entire district. Phillips said it's either close the schools or revisit the idea of adding Furlough Days back to the school calendar.

"If we don't have enough funds to operate appropriately, then that may be an area that we could look at," Phillips said.

At large, board member Cathy Williams wants the board to look into alternative methods before making rash decisions. She says while it will be hard for teachers, parents and students, major changes like school closures may have to happen because of lack of funds from the state.

"We've done everything that we can but we are at the bone now; the state continues to cut us and the only way we are going to be able to handle those cuts is now to close schools and perhaps lay people off," Williams said.

The board agreed for the proposal to proceed to the next phase which will be Public Forum.

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