Richmond County schools one step closer to flexibility decision - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Richmond County schools one step closer to flexibility decision

Richmond County Schools are one step closer to deciding between three flexibility options that will enter them into a performance contract with the Georgia Department of Education. A group working on the decision said they've decided on an Education Excellence School System, or IE2.

That decision will now head to the final board for approval.

House Bill 1209 is requiring every district in Georgia to pick between the three options by June 30 of this year. They are a Charter System, IE2 or a Status Quo School System.

A spokesperson for the Richmond County Board of Education said the group was compromised of local chamber of commerce members and retired educators.

The bill allows local school boards to enter into a performance contract with the Georgia Department of Education for flexibility on state education laws, rules, and policies, in exchange for increased accountability.

According to a presentation by the Georgia Department of Education, a plus to an IE2 system is that the district could save money with waivers if they are meeting state standards. A con is that they could lose governance over schools that don't meet performance targets after five years.

“We're asking the community to look at our strategic goals; where we're looking to go. The bottom line is we're about increasing student academic achievement,” Dr. Missoura Ashe with the Richmond County School Board said.

Officials with the school district said the board wants another public meeting about what IE2 is.

Representatives for a state-wide charter school under construction in Hephzibah said they are on track with building and will be open in the fall of 2015. They noted the school is not being built to provide competition, but to provide a school of choice for families in the area.

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