Greenwood Public School District and public schools in Leflore county are starting their first school year as Greenwood Leflore Consolidated School District.
Mike Kent is the interim deputy superintendent with Mississippi Department of Education. In this case, consolidation doesn’t mean closing any schools. It’s done at the top level with superintendents and administrative staffs.
He cites a past merger with Starkville Oktibbeha Consolidated School District that benefited the students’ needs.
“Opportunities, whether they were academic or extracurricular were very limited in Oktibbeha County," Kent said. " It usually involves increased academic and extracurricular opportunities for the kids in the poorer performing district, which is usually smaller as well.”
Jacquelyn Sandifer-Rhodes is a parent of a Greenwood High School student. She says her son, who is an athlete, and other students wondered what would happen with sports teams.
But Sandifer-Rhodes’ son is staying at his same school.
“Ever since I was a child, we’ve been separate districts," Sandifer-Rhodes said. " As a parent, I was worried in the beginning because we didn’t know what to really expect. And then they explained it to us that it’s just the top that’s consolidating right now. Everything else is going to stay the same.
Students will begin returning to schools across the state next week.