Board votes to close North Sumter Junior High School

Published: Apr. 10, 2018 at 6:04 PM CDT
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North Sumter Junior High is approaching its final days and education leaders are working toward a smooth transition.

"The plan moving forward now is to have our kids, the students who attend that school, become familiar where they will be attending school next year, as well as our employees, and notify where they will be employed next year," said Sumter County Superintendent Tyrone Yarbrough.

The school board voted last month to shut down one of its 5 schools. The board cites educational performance and low attendance as factors behind the closing.

The Kindergarten through 8th grade school was one of 6 in the Black Belt to receive an "F" rating in the state's latest grade report. Superintendent Dr. Tyrone Yarbrough says the district will do its best to take care of each child and prevent any future closings.

"They will go to the closest county school we have. We will have to look at where they live, where they reside. And look at bus routes and those are the type of things we will be doing here shortly," said Dr. Yarbrough.

Employees will have a preference on their next stop, and will be placed based on the needs of each school.

"They will be given an opportunity to give us a preference. And we will look at the preferences to see if we have scenarios that meet their preferences and then we're going to do what's best for them," said Dr. Yarbrough.

New travel distance won't be an issue. Bus routes will be adjusted to accommodate each student.

"And we will provide transportation to the schools they'll be attending next year," said Dr. Yarbrough.

Livingston Junior High, West End Junior High and Kinterbish Junior High would be choices for students moving forward. The board will weigh options over the coming months on what to do with the building once the school closes.

The last day for students is set for May 24th.