The Mississippi Department of Education has taken over the Aberdeen School District. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports Governor Bryant declared a state of emergency exists in the district.

" /> Gov. Bryant Declares State of Emergency in Aberdeen Schools | News | Mississippi Public Broadcasting
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Gov. Bryant Declares State of Emergency in Aberdeen Schools

By Daniel Cherry | Published 20 Apr 2012 04:01pm | comments

The Mississippi Department of Education has taken over the Aberdeen School District. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports Governor Bryant declared a state of emergency exists in the district.

School board members voted to take control of the school district, and appointed Bob Strebeck conservator. Strebeck has previously served as conservator in four other districts. Dr. Tom Burnham, State Superintendent of Education, expects the takeover to go smoothly.

"One of the first things we'll do is go through senior records, make sure all our students are ok for graduation. It's a process, and it's a well-defined process."

The move comes after an investigation found rampant interference by local school board members in the affairs of the low-performing district.

"My preference would be not to be involved with conservatorships, but we are. So we're working as quickly and as positively as we can to end those conservatorships and return (the schools) to the communities."

Governor Phil Bryant approved the takeover late Friday.

Bryant says, "“After a thorough review, it is imperative for the state to obtain control of the Aberdeen School District and take immediate steps so the district can begin to recover from serious leadership and management deficiencies,” Gov. Bryant said. “Accreditation violations, state and federal law violations and a continued pattern of poor student performance are unfortunate and will not be tolerated. The students and community of Aberdeen deserve better."

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