The State of Mississippi is making moves to take over the Aberdeen School District. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports how officials say an extreme emergency situation exists in the schools.

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State Making Moves to Take Over Aberdeen Schools

By Daniel Cherry | Published 18 Apr 2012 06:35pm | comments

The State of Mississippi is making moves to take over the Aberdeen School District. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports how officials say an extreme emergency situation exists in the schools, and action needs to be taken.

The Aberdeen School District has been accused of violating 31 of the 37 of the standards required to keep school accreditation. Today the Mississippi Board of Education is discussing whether to take over the district. Royce Stephens the Aberdeen School Board President says the community is already up in arms.

"This town is in an uproar right now. It's in an uproar about the state taking over.", says Stephens. "How can you say that it's not going to affect the children in the district? You sit there and say,'This is going to go on. This is going to go on.' You can't say that."

Of the concerns brought against Aberdeen schools are allegations of two counts of sexual misconduct by faculty that were never reported to authorities. Dr. Paula Vanderford, the Director of Accreditation for the state, says if the school board moves ahead with conservatorship, it will be the first step to solving the problems.

"They'll start resolving those deficiencies immediately. Once the conservator is placed in the district they will prioritize and begin resolving those deficiencies."

The state commission on school accreditation voted unanimously yesterday to declare a state of emergency in the district. At the hearing, Robert Eiland, the interim Superintendent of Aberdeen Schools told members of the commission to do what they had to do.

"Whatever decision you have to make, I'll ask from the start, make it the best for our children. Don't worry about the adults. We'll be ok. If I'm the problem, then get rid of me."

The Mississippi Board of Education is expected to vote tomorrow whether to place Aberdeen schools under state control. Any such moves have to be approved by the Governor.

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