SCS school board votes to close school, start to revoke charter of another

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Two schools got the axe Tuesday when the Shelby County Schools board voted to close them.

Board members voted to close Memphis Health Careers Academy and start the process to revoke the charter for both campuses of New Consortium for Law and Business.

Kenyana Robinson's twin sisters go to Memphis Health Careers Academy, and she wants to keep it that way.

"It's going to hurt their feelings, because they say they like this school a lot," she said.

But Superintendent Dorsey Hopson said enrollment is low for Memphis Health Careers Academy. It has only 74 kids, and the academic performance is poor.

"They've got less classes, but they're better for them here," Robinson insisted.

Hopson said New Consortium for Law and Business kept at least two students enrolled and receiving credits and grades while they were enrolled in other schools, had non-staff members teaching students and the schools did not collect attendance data for the first 48 days of class, among other issues.

This is the second straight year Hopson has recommended New Consortium's charter be revoked. It has 219 students enrolled.

"We did agree to wait and make sure that this time we had enough information and enough time to make the right decision," school board member Stephanie Love said.

Students will be rezoned due to the closures. They could also apply for a transfer or an optional school.

But with Memphis Health Careers Academy being a priority school, performing in the bottom 5 percent, the question is, will kids go from one bad situation to another?

"What I don't want to see happen is for these children to leave one school that was not doing a good job and to go to another school that is also struggling," Love said.