As Suburbs Settle Germantown Sorting Out Options For Schools

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(Germantown, TN) Collierville has reached a settlement with Shelby County Schools.

County commissioners say Collierville will get to keep all schools within their city limits and must pay $6 million over 12 years to cover employee benefits.

News Channel 3 is also learning more about the settlement between Bartlett and Shelby County Schools.

If the boards involved approve the deal, Bartlett will keep all school in its city limits and pay $7.3 million over 12 years to offset employee benefits.

Arlington and Lakeland approved similar deals this week, and Millington is expected to settle Friday.

As the other five suburbs seem to sail smoothly toward a school settlement, things are a little more complicated for Germantown.

Right now, county school board members say they are keeping Germantown Elementary, Middle and High, along with the thousands of students who live in the county but go to those schools.

This could seriously impact Germantown’s ability to even open its own school district because the diversity statics may not be legal as it would re-segregate schools, and SCS school board member David Pickler says that’s not the only problem.

“I do think the financial concerns are there. Certainly their business model was built on the idea of serving all the children within the community and having all the school buildings,” said Pickler.

Pickler and other Germantown officials were the first to push for municipal schools by getting state laws passed to make them legal and raising the sales tax to pay for them.

After all that the future is still uncertain.

“I do believe in the even negotiations are not as fruitful as I would like them to be then I think other options must be considered. It could be the option of utilizing charter management organizations. It could mean going back to the legislature. I hope it doesn’t get to that point,” said Pickler.

Germantown Mayor Sharon Goldsworthy would not comment on the situation.

Shelby County School Board members say they will not negotiate on those three Germantown schools until Germantown School Board members are sworn into office December 2.

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