EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSWayne Board Says It Welcomes State Help With School Issues
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Dave Benton
Web Producer: Jeff Morris
Also Contributing: The Associated Press
Reported: Aug. 7, 2013 10:22 AM EDT
Updated: Aug. 8, 2013 4:25 AM EDT
Wayne , Wayne County , West Virginia
Teachers found out their schools aren't making the grade, one day before school starts in Wayne County.
Tammy Forbush is the principal at Vinson Middle School, where she said staff work each year on promoting student achievement. That's why it surprised her to hear
West Virginia Schools Superintendent James Phares tell the Wayne County Board of Education they were close to a state takeover.
I think, but I'm not sure it's not as bad as how it looked on paper or if there is an issue,” Forbush said. “We've begun to fix things already on county level, and it's just not showing up yet, as far as what they know on state level.”
Eyewitness News caught up with Wayne County residents to see what they thought.
"You should have a little more time to say something, instead of scaring people before school starts,” Breanna Dixson said.
Daniel Dixson said it sounded like a scare tactic.
“(It’s) like they're trying to get them to do more on the ball and do it their way,” he said.
So what did the state superintendent mean when he told the Wayne County Board of Education they were on the verge of a state takeover?
A spokesperson with the board said Phares talked about the school board being more transparent, student achievement levels, the number of personnel over funding formulas and the finances needed for facilities working with the school building association.
“Of education, the whole concept there was about providing help,” Lisa Cordeiro, of the West Virginia Department of Education, said. “Not to call out a county, but to say, ‘Hey. Listen. Help is available.’ The school building association is ready to help in any way they can and provide best advice possible.”
Forbush said Vinson Middle is making schedule adjustments so teachers have time for team planning. She said they have plans in place to help kids who are falling through the cracks academically.
Wayne County Board of Education members said they welcome the state's help in correcting the school system's problems.
State Schools Superintendent James Phares offered the state's assistance during a county board meeting Tuesday night.
Phares' offer came after he warned the board that the school system is on the verge of a state takeover.
That surprised not only the Wayne County Superintendent Lynn Hurt, but also Tammy Forbush, Principal at Vinson Middle School. "I think, but I'm not sure it's not as bad as how it looks on paper or if there is an issue. We've begun to fix things already on the county level."
Liza Cordeiro with the State Education Department says Phares talked about the Wayne County School Board being more transparent, student achievement levels, the number of personnel over funding formulas and the finances needed for facilities working with the school board administration. "The whole concept there was about providing help. Not to call out a county, but the say hey listen, help is available. The School Board Association is ready to help in any way they can and provide the best advice possible."
Phares told the Wayne B.O.E. a leadership team from Marshall University can help the board.
Board member Rob Pennington told Phares that the board will take any help it can get.
Phares said 31 other counties are on the brink of having deficits.
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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