Education

Education

Parents set forum to discuss alternative education in Muscogee County

Two weeks after the Muscogee County School Board voted 5-3 to table for three months the superintendent’s controversial recommendation to hire Camelot Education, a private, for-profit company based in Austin, Texas, to run three alternative education programs for $6.4 million annually, a group of parents will conduct a public forum to discuss other options. Waleisah Wilson, founder and president of NewLife-Second Chance Outreach Inc., a nonprofit organization helping former inmates transition back into the Columbus community, announced the forum in a news release.

Education

University System of Georgia raising 2017-18 tuition after no 2016-17 increase

Tuition will increase by 2 percent next school year at the University System of Georgia’s 28 institutions, following no increase for this school year, the state’s Board of Regents has announced. For students attending Columbus State University, this change means undergraduate tuition will increase by $3.47 per credit hour, from $174.20 to $177.67, CSU noted in a news release Thursday. For in-state students enrolled in 15 hours for a semester, a typical full-time course load, the total tuition will increase by $52, from $2,613 to $2,665.

Education

Columbus student wins first scholarship honoring longtime MCSD educators

Tuesday, foundation president and chief executive officer Betsy Covington told Genesis Cooper that she will receive as much as $7,200 annually for four years of college as the 2017 winner of the James Henry Smith and Gladys Manning Smith Scholarship. Wednesday, Covington broke similarly super news to a different Columbus High senior. As the 2017 winner of the Jeannette Williamson Craig & Eugene L. Craig Scholarship, Andrew Cho will receive $5,000 annually for four years of college.

Education

Anti-racism director requests investigation of school board’s delayed vote

Southern Anti-Racism Network regional director Theresa El-Amin on Wednesday filed a complaint with the Muscogee County School District’s accreditation agency, AdvancEd of Alpharetta, Ga. El-Amin asserts that the Muscogee County School Board’s 5-3 vote April 10 to table for three months superintendent David Lewis’ recommendation to hire Camelot Education, a private, for-profit company based in Austin, Texas, to run three alternative education programs for a total of $6.4 million annually “jeopardizes the health and safety of special needs students and the improperly trained staff who serve them.”

Education

Forum puts spotlight on alternative education in Muscogee County

During a public forum about alternative education Tuesday night, parents of special-needs students shared their stories of struggling with the Muscogee County School District to provide better services for their children. Approximately 20 folks not associated with the Muscogee County School Board or the media gathered in the Mildred L. Terry Public Library and heard Camelot Education officials describe how the private, for-profit company based in Austin, Texas, would fill that gap.

Education

MCSD backs off ‘radically’ changing custodians

While the controversial proposal to hire a private, for-profit company to run alternative education programs has been delayed for three months and has been the main topic of conversation about the Muscogee County School District during the past month, another controversial proposal generated so much heat that the administration has decided to not even ask the Muscogee County School Board to vote on it. In a plan that MCSD operations chief David Goldberg said would “radically change” who cleans the district’s schools, the administration would consolidated the four contracts it has with janitorial service companies into one contract for outsourced custodians. The proposal would have moved MCSD employees working as custodians at the 32 elementary schools to the 12 middle schools and nine high schools, and the contracted custodians would have been placed at all the elementary schools.

Education

Columbus student who put life on pause to help disabled mom wins big scholarship

The Community Foundation of the Chattahoochee Valley surprised a Columbus High School student Tuesday by announcing her as the winner of a scholarship that could pay as much as $7,200 annually for four years of college. Columbus High senior Genesis Cooper is the 2017 recipient of the James Henry Smith and Gladys Manning Smith Scholarship, foundation president and chief executive officer Betsy Covington declared in the humanities class taught by Pam Haga.

Education

Muscogee County School District proposed budget an increase of 4.6%

The Muscogee County School District’s general fund budget next fiscal year, including transfers to other funds, will be $287.3 million -- $12.6 million more than this fiscal year, an increase of 4.6 percent -- if the school board approves the administration’s recommended budget. Monday night, starting at 6 p.m., the Muscogee County School Board will conduct the second of its three public hearings on the millage rate, which the administration has proposed to keep at 23.37 for the 21st straight year.

Education

Public forum to further discuss controversial alternative education plan

In the wake of the Muscogee County School Board tabling the superintendent’s recommendation to hire Camelot Education to run alternative education programs in the district for $6.4 million annually, a public forum is scheduled for April 18 to further discuss this issue. Co-hosted by the Southern Anti-Racism Network and Camelot, a private, for-profit company based in Austin, Texas, the forum at the Mildred L. Terry Public Library, 640 Veterans Parkway in Columbus, is expected to start at 6 p.m. and finish by 8 p.m.

Education

2 Muscogee schools improve enough to be removed from lowest-performing lists

The Muscogee County School District has two of the state’s 74 schools that improved their academic achievement enough to be removed from one of two lists comprising Georgia’s 243 lowest-performing schools. Jordan Vocational High School was removed from the Priority Schools list, and Rigdon Road Elementary School was removed from the Focus Schools list, the Georgia Department of Education has announced.

Videos

REACH scholarship to make college dreams reality

Eight eighth-graders are the first recipients in the Muscogee County School District of the four-year-old state program that selects students based on financial need and demonstrated ability to succeed.
Ang Li ali@ledger-enquirer.com
REACH scholarship to make college dreams reality 1:37

REACH scholarship to make college dreams reality

Grandparent of Mathews student expresses concerns, empathy after fatal bus crash 1:28

Grandparent of Mathews student expresses concerns, empathy after fatal bus crash

Nadine Moore, leader of the Four Points Parents Association, castigates the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and defends Muscogee County School Board member Frank Myers 3:26

Nadine Moore, leader of the Four Points Parents Association, castigates the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and defends Muscogee County School Board member Frank Myers

Community Foundation presents 2016 Smith Scholarship to Columbus High School student 1:43

Community Foundation presents 2016 Smith Scholarship to Columbus High School student