CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - A North Charleston state lawmaker says he will file legislation to have the city of North Charleston leave the Charleston County School District if the district passes a multi-million dollar proposal Monday.
District 113 Rep. Marvin Pendarvis (D-Charleston) made the announcement Monday afternoon, hours before the Charleston County School District Boardis expected to vote on a $32 million proposal called Reimagine Schools.
“The Reimagine Schools Initiative is the plan that has the potential to rob 11,000 children, the largest portion of which are in North Charleston, of their right to community control public education,” Pendarvis said. “If passed, it will begin a years-long sideshow of redundant education planning that buries communities under meetings and internet input schemes that only served to exhaust neighborhoods.”
The plan has been widely panned by opponents as a veiled attempt to create Schools of Innovation managed by public-private partnerships. That claim has been vehemently denied by the proposal’s sponsor, the Coastal Community Foundation.
He said if the Reimagine Schools initiative passes, he will file legislation on Tuesday.
“If this goes forward, I will cut us free from a district who loses a superintendent in the middle of trying to reimagine itself into a district where some communities get to run their schools and some aren’t allowed to,” he said.
READ MORE: Charleston Co. School Board to vote on ‘Reimagine Schools’ proposal
Pendarvis came out against the plan on Friday.
“I’m concerned by the proposal to ‘reimagine’ 23 of Charleston’s public schools by an entity that has no experience with school operations. The $32 million in this proposal should go directly to the schools, not an outside organization that I do not believe is fit for the job. Meaningful investments in education will improve these schools, not privatization,” Pendarvis said.
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