Parents, School Officials Discuss Probation Issue - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

10/15/04

Parents, School Officials Discuss Probation Issue

Parents attend meeting at Savannah High. Parents attend meeting at Savannah High.

A lot of parents around Chatham County are worried about their kids' futures. After complaints about ethics and an investigation, the Chatham-Savannah system could lose accreditation.

Wednesday, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools recommended that the school district go on probation because of several violations. Last night we talked with several parents who are worried about the fallout from that recommendation.

If the worst-case scenario does play out, and the school district loses accreditation, no students in the class of 2006 would qualify for the HOPE scholarship, and most colleges wouldn't even accept them.

"Whatever needs to be done needs to be done in a hurry," said parent Anne Ogden.

The day after the report became public, parents all over Savannah were discussing it, and a lot of them still aren't even sure what all the consequences could be.

"We talked about it quite a bit today and when I first heard it, I thought it would affect my senior this year," said parent Corinthia McCoy-Thompson. "But then I heard them say, 'We'll investigate for a year.' So I'm like, 'She's okay.' But it takes a village and she's not the only one."

At a town hall meeting he hosted at Savannah High for other school district issues, board member Daniel Frazier said he's a little frustrated that the board never got a chance to address any of the concerns, including some they didn't even know about until the report came back.

"I think the concerns of individual board members needs to be addressed, but the board as a whole--and putting 35,000 students at risk--I don't think is fair to the school district," said Frazier.

SACS will meet again later this month to decide if it will actually put the district on probation. If it does, the Savannah-Chatham Board of Education will have a year to make improvements before any penalties are handed down.

Reported by: Chris Cowperthwaite, ccowperthwaite@wtoc.com

Powered by Frankly