SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details

Author : LavadaCrooks
Publish Date : 2021-04-21 05:34:11
SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details

SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new name, buildings, higher teacher pay

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Shelby County Schools wants to "reimagine" its footprint in Shelby County with a plan that proposes building five new schools and closing about 13 to 15 others, mostly through consolidation. The plan proposes additions to at least 13 existing schools. 

The plan, unveiled for the first time in a presentation to district board members Monday, includes phases of work to take place over the next 10 years, through 2031. Capital projects require funding and approval from the county commission, which is scheduled to see the plan during a meeting Wednesday. 

a group of people sitting on a bench: Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.© Ariel Cobbert/The Commercial Appeal Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.

New schools are proposed for Frayser, Orange Mound and Raleigh, as well as Grahamwood and southeast Shelby County and include many K-8 and a 6-12 school models, meaning the new buildings will combine grade levels as they also combine communities of schools.

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A complete list of proposed new builds and closures are below. The school board would have to approve closures each year, officials explained, as they would have to approve each of the other proposed items on the plan.

The Commercial Appeal is reviewing the details of the plan released by the district and will update this story with specifics as they are discovered.

Critics of the plan may focus on potential closures and changes, Superintendent Joris Ray said Monday.

“But it’s so important to focus on the opportunities that are possible,” he said, acknowledging that those opportunities come with "tough decisions." 

He added: “Together we must believe. Together we must achieve. Together we are 901.”

'Reimagine 901': SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new district name, school buildings, higher teacher pay

The facility plan shared in detail Monday is part of the district's larger "Reimagine 901" strategy, teased during Ray's second state of the district address last week. The plan also incorporates academic strategy, with proposals of expanded student programming with dual language, arts and advanced courses, more teachers for the district's youngest students and a sustainable salary schedule for teachers — who Ray wants to be the highest paid in Tennessee. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

Among many other academic initiatives, the plan includes the proposal for a 4-year grant program that will put schools on the path toward developing programs in one of three categories: leadership, social justice and environmental impact. Angela Whitelaw, deputy superintendent of academics, explained that each year over the next four years, schools will write proposals to create one of the three programs. SCS will select 40 schools each year, she said.

Facilities plan is long-awaited for SCS

SCS has received hundreds of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding, including the most recent and largest third installment of $503 million. While the funding can only be used for a specific set of projects, some building improvements, including improvements to ventilation, are accepted uses. The funding is a "game changer" in that respect, explained John Barker, deputy superintendent of finance and operations, allowing SCS to tackle parts of the project in ways they may not have been able to before. 

Funding: Nearly $620 million in COVID-19 relief funds headed to Shelby County area schools

County commissioners expected a long-term facility strategy from the district this time last year, but SCS didn't reveal such a plan once the pandemic took hold. The new "Reimagine 901" plan incorporates suggestions gathered from community input sessions held before the pandemic, officials say, and was revised up until Monday's presentation.

Background: SCS to unveil 10-year plan to close some schools, build new ones

That community input, as well as student achievement, equity, commitment, improvement, respect, communication and transparency were among ideals guiding the plan, Ray said Friday, which will also tackle a remaining $400 million in deferred building maintenance.

Much of that deferred maintenance can be addressed using the federal stimulus funding, Barker explained Monday. That will include a proposed $175 million toward improvements at all SCS-owned schools, to include charters and Achievement School District buildings, $100 million in HVAC improvements, $50 million in roof repairs, and additional improvements in IT, windows and water quality.

Additions to 13 schools, many to address issues with spacing, will be funded with $65 million in federal funds, he said.

Community pushback is expected with the plan, SCS has acknowledged. Orange Mound rallied around its Dunbar Elementary when it was on a closure list about five years ago; the school is still open today, but is slated again to close and move students to a new school by 2026. There was more pushback when a "footprint" consolidation plan was revealed nearly two years ago, at the end of Dorsey Hopson's tenure as superintendent. Ray was named interim superintendent that same week, and the plan, which would have closed 28 schools, built 10 schools and added on to five, was never seen through. Monday is the first time Ray's administration has revealed any new facilities plan.

The plan proposes more K-8 and 6-12 buildings, combinations of traditional elementary and middle and then middle and high schools. The strategy there comes from research around students and school building transitions, Barker, the deputy superintendent, explained after the district address last week. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

"When students transition from school to school, especially from elementary to middle and then middle to high, what happens is that sometimes there's this disconnect, and it takes them a little while to connect to that new school, new learning opportunities," Barker said. "...As you minimize those number of school transitions, what you do is maximize opportunities for kids to contain that learning and really transition more grade-to-grade rather than school-to-school."  

Which Memphis neighborhoods will get new SCS schools? 

SCS has proposed new schools are built in the following areas, to be completed in the following years and at the following costs:

  • New Frayser area high school, completed 2025, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Trezevant High School

  • New Treadwell K-8, completed 2026, cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Treadwell Elementary and Treadwell Middle Schools

  • New Orange Mound K-8, completed 2027, cost cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools

  • New Southeast High School, completed 2029, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Sheffield and Wooddale high Schools

  • New Raleigh School, grades 6-12, completed 2031, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools

  • Which SCS schools will get additions?

    SCS has proposed the following 13 schools receive building additions:

  • Brownsville Road Elementary
  • Booker T. Washington 6-12
  • Downtown Elementary School
  • Macon Hall Elementary School
  • Melrose High School
  • Mt. Pigsah Middle
  • Sheffield Elementary School
  • Shelby Oaks Elementary School
  • Snowden School
  • Raleigh-Bartlett Meadows Elementary School
  • Westhaven Elementary School
  • White Station High School
  • Willow Oaks Elementary School
  • Which SCS schools will close?

    SCS has proposed the following schools close under the new plan:

  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Carver High School

  • Shady Grove Elementary, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Dexter K-8 and White Station Elementary

The following buildings would likely close if proposed new school buildings are approved: 

  • Trezevant High School, students would go to the new Frayser high school
  • Treadwell Elementary and Middle Schools, students would go to the new Treadwell K-8
  • Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools, students would go to the new Orange Mound K-8
  • Sheffield and Wooddale High Schools, students would go to the new Southeast high school
  • Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools, students would go to the new Raleigh 6-12 school

Closed schools sites would receive memorial markers, according to the plan.

Additional building proposals

The following schools would likely receive new gyms, if plans are approved. The gyms would also be designed as community storm shelters, and are therefore proposed to be built using federal funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Below is a list of the schools and proposed gym completion date:

  • Belle Forest Elementary, August 2022
  • Cummings K-8, August 2022
  • Delano Elementary, December 2023
  • Douglass K-8, December 2024
  • Grahamwood Elementary, December 2023
  • Kingsbury Middle/High, January 2023
  • Richland Elementary, December 2023

Stadium upgrades are proposed for the following schools at the following completion times:

  • Halle Stadium, August 2022
  • Melrose Stadium, August 2024
  • Whitehaven Stadium, August 2022
  • Cordova Stadium, August 2024

Additionally, a STEM building at Whitehaven High

SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new name, buildings, higher teacher pay

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Shelby County Schools wants to "reimagine" its footprint in Shelby County with a plan that proposes building five new schools and closing about 13 to 15 others, mostly through consolidation. The plan proposes additions to at least 13 existing schools. 

The plan, unveiled for the first time in a presentation to district board members Monday, includes phases of work to take place over the next 10 years, through 2031. Capital projects require funding and approval from the county commission, which is scheduled to see the plan during a meeting Wednesday. 

a group of people sitting on a bench: Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.© Ariel Cobbert/The Commercial Appeal Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.

New schools are proposed for Frayser, Orange Mound and Raleigh, as well as Grahamwood and southeast Shelby County and include many K-8 and a 6-12 school models, meaning the new buildings will combine grade levels as they also combine communities of schools.

Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.

A complete list of proposed new builds and closures are below. The school board would have to approve closures each year, officials explained, as they would have to approve each of the other proposed items on the plan.

The Commercial Appeal is reviewing the details of the plan released by the district and will update this story with specifics as they are discovered.

Critics of the plan may focus on potential closures and changes, Superintendent Joris Ray said Monday.

“But it’s so important to focus on the opportunities that are possible,” he said, acknowledging that those opportunities come with "tough decisions." 

He added: “Together we must believe. Together we must achieve. Together we are 901.”

'Reimagine 901': SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new district name, school buildings, higher teacher pay

The facility plan shared in detail Monday is part of the district's larger "Reimagine 901" strategy, teased during Ray's second state of the district address last week. The plan also incorporates academic strategy, with proposals of expanded student programming with dual language, arts and advanced courses, more teachers for the district's youngest students and a sustainable salary schedule for teachers — who Ray wants to be the highest paid in Tennessee. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

Among many other academic initiatives, the plan includes the proposal for a 4-year grant program that will put schools on the path toward developing programs in one of three categories: leadership, social justice and environmental impact. Angela Whitelaw, deputy superintendent of academics, explained that each year over the next four years, schools will write proposals to create one of the three programs. SCS will select 40 schools each year, she said.

Facilities plan is long-awaited for SCS

SCS has received hundreds of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding, including the most recent and largest third installment of $503 million. While the funding can only be used for a specific set of projects, some building improvements, including improvements to ventilation, are accepted uses. The funding is a "game changer" in that respect, explained John Barker, deputy superintendent of finance and operations, allowing SCS to tackle parts of the project in ways they may not have been able to before. 

Funding: Nearly $620 million in COVID-19 relief funds headed to Shelby County area schools

County commissioners expected a long-term facility strategy from the district this time last year, but SCS didn't reveal such a plan once the pandemic took hold. The new "Reimagine 901" plan incorporates suggestions gathered from community input sessions held before the pandemic, officials say, and was revised up until Monday's presentation.

Background: SCS to unveil 10-year plan to close some schools, build new ones

That community input, as well as student achievement, equity, commitment, improvement, respect, communication and transparency were among ideals guiding the plan, Ray said Friday, which will also tackle a remaining $400 million in deferred building maintenance.

Much of that deferred maintenance can be addressed using the federal stimulus funding, Barker explained Monday. That will include a proposed $175 million toward improvements at all SCS-owned schools, to include charters and Achievement School District buildings, $100 million in HVAC improvements, $50 million in roof repairs, and additional improvements in IT, windows and water quality.

Additions to 13 schools, many to address issues with spacing, will be funded with $65 million in federal funds, he said.

Community pushback is expected with the plan, SCS has acknowledged. Orange Mound rallied around its Dunbar Elementary when it was on a closure list about five years ago; the school is still open today, but is slated again to close and move students to a new school by 2026. There was more pushback when a "footprint" consolidation plan was revealed nearly two years ago, at the end of Dorsey Hopson's tenure as superintendent. Ray was named interim superintendent that same week, and the plan, which would have closed 28 schools, built 10 schools and added on to five, was never seen through. Monday is the first time Ray's administration has revealed any new facilities plan.

The plan proposes more K-8 and 6-12 buildings, combinations of traditional elementary and middle and then middle and high schools. The strategy there comes from research around students and school building transitions, Barker, the deputy superintendent, explained after the district address last week. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

"When students transition from school to school, especially from elementary to middle and then middle to high, what happens is that sometimes there's this disconnect, and it takes them a little while to connect to that new school, new learning opportunities," Barker said. "...As you minimize those number of school transitions, what you do is maximize opportunities for kids to contain that learning and really transition more grade-to-grade rather than school-to-school."  

Which Memphis neighborhoods will get new SCS schools? 

SCS has proposed new schools are built in the following areas, to be completed in the following years and at the following costs:

  • New Frayser area high school, completed 2025, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Trezevant High School

  • New Treadwell K-8, completed 2026, cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Treadwell Elementary and Treadwell Middle Schools

  • New Orange Mound K-8, completed 2027, cost cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools

  • New Southeast High School, completed 2029, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Sheffield and Wooddale high Schools

  • New Raleigh School, grades 6-12, completed 2031, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools

  • Which SCS schools will get additions?

    SCS has proposed the following 13 schools receive building additions:

  • Brownsville Road Elementary
  • Booker T. Washington 6-12
  • Downtown Elementary School
  • Macon Hall Elementary School
  • Melrose High School
  • Mt. Pigsah Middle
  • Sheffield Elementary School
  • Shelby Oaks Elementary School
  • Snowden School
  • Raleigh-Bartlett Meadows Elementary School
  • Westhaven Elementary School
  • White Station High School
  • Willow Oaks Elementary School
  • Which SCS schools will close?

    SCS has proposed the following schools close under the new plan:

  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Carver High School

  • Shady Grove Elementary, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Dexter K-8 and White Station Elementary

The following buildings would likely close if proposed new school buildings are approved: 

  • Trezevant High School, students would go to the new Frayser high school
  • Treadwell Elementary and Middle Schools, students would go to the new Treadwell K-8
  • Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools, students would go to the new Orange Mound K-8
  • Sheffield and Wooddale High Schools, students would go to the new Southeast high school
  • Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools, students would go to the new Raleigh 6-12 school

Closed schools sites would receive memorial markers, according to the plan.

Additional building proposals

The following schools would likely receive new gyms, if plans are approved. The gyms would also be designed as community storm shelters, and are therefore proposed to be built using federal funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Below is a list of the schools and proposed gym completion date:

  • Belle Forest Elementary, August 2022
  • Cummings K-8, August 2022
  • Delano Elementary, December 2023
  • Douglass K-8, December 2024
  • Grahamwood Elementary, December 2023
  • Kingsbury Middle/High, January 2023
  • Richland Elementary, December 2023

Stadium upgrades are proposed for the following schools at the following completion times:

  • Halle Stadium, August 2022
  • Melrose Stadium, August 2024
  • Whitehaven Stadium, August 2022
  • Cordova Stadium, August 2024

Additionally, a STEM building at Whitehaven High School is proposed to be completed in 2024.

Some schools would receive new programming, zoning

Under the new plan, Kingsbury Middle and High Schools would become a combined 6-12 grade campus. Bolton High School would become a "world class" Agri-STEM campus with Barret's Chapel K-8 in August 2022.

SCS has proposed that Alton Elementary students go to A.B. Hill Elementary. The Alton school building would become an "Early Childhood Headquarters" by August 2022.

The district has also proposed that Maxine Smith STEAM Academy relocate to East High School by August 2022, expanding seats at Middle College High. 

The following schools would be rezoned under the plan: 

  • Brownsville Road Elementary would receive students from Dexter in August 2024
  • Cordova High would send students to Mt. Pisgah, a 6-12 school, in August 2022
  • Dexter K-8 would receive students from Shady Grove, White Station Elementary and White Station Middle beginning in August 2022
  • White Station Elementary would send students to Dexter in August 2024
  • White Station Middle would send students to Dexter in August 2024

Under the plan, the following schools would become "Community Hub" schools with increased wrap around services by 2022:

  • Northaven Elementary
  • Hamilton High
  • Manassas High
  • Melrose High
  • Westwood High
  • Woodstock Middle

The following SCS properties would be sold or developed under the plan: 

  • Grays Creek site and bus yard, located at 2800 Grays Creek Dr. 
  • Messick High, located at 703 South Greer St.
  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, located at 1266 Poplar Ave.
  • Shady Grove Elementary, located at 5360 Shady Grove Rd.

This is a developing story and will be updated. 

SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new name, buildings, higher teacher pay

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Shelby County Schools wants to "reimagine" its footprint in Shelby County with a plan that proposes building five new schools and closing about 13 to 15 others, mostly through consolidation. The plan proposes additions to at least 13 existing schools. 

The plan, unveiled for the first time in a presentation to district board members Monday, includes phases of work to take place over the next 10 years, through 2031. Capital projects require funding and approval from the county commission, which is scheduled to see the plan during a meeting Wednesday. 

a group of people sitting on a bench: Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.© Ariel Cobbert/The Commercial Appeal Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.

New schools are proposed for Frayser, Orange Mound and Raleigh, as well as Grahamwood and southeast Shelby County and include many K-8 and a 6-12 school models, meaning the new buildings will combine grade levels as they also combine communities of schools.

Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.

A complete list of proposed new builds and closures are below. The school board would have to approve closures each year, officials explained, as they would have to approve each of the other proposed items on the plan.

The Commercial Appeal is reviewing the details of the plan released by the district and will update this story with specifics as they are discovered.

Critics of the plan may focus on potential closures and changes, Superintendent Joris Ray said Monday.

“But it’s so important to focus on the opportunities that are possible,” he said, acknowledging that those opportunities come with "tough decisions." 

He added: “Together we must believe. Together we must achieve. Together we are 901.”

'Reimagine 901': SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new district name, school buildings, higher teacher pay

The facility plan shared in detail Monday is part of the district's larger "Reimagine 901" strategy, teased during Ray's second state of the district address last week. The plan also incorporates academic strategy, with proposals of expanded student programming with dual language, arts and advanced courses, more teachers for the district's youngest students and a sustainable salary schedule for teachers — who Ray wants to be the highest paid in Tennessee. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

Among many other academic initiatives, the plan includes the proposal for a 4-year grant program that will put schools on the path toward developing programs in one of three categories: leadership, social justice and environmental impact. Angela Whitelaw, deputy superintendent of academics, explained that each year over the next four years, schools will write proposals to create one of the three programs. SCS will select 40 schools each year, she said.

Facilities plan is long-awaited for SCS

SCS has received hundreds of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding, including the most recent and largest third installment of $503 million. While the funding can only be used for a specific set of projects, some building improvements, including improvements to ventilation, are accepted uses. The funding is a "game changer" in that respect, explained John Barker, deputy superintendent of finance and operations, allowing SCS to tackle parts of the project in ways they may not have been able to before. 

Funding: Nearly $620 million in COVID-19 relief funds headed to Shelby County area schools

County commissioners expected a long-term facility strategy from the district this time last year, but SCS didn't reveal such a plan once the pandemic took hold. The new "Reimagine 901" plan incorporates suggestions gathered from community input sessions held before the pandemic, officials say, and was revised up until Monday's presentation.

Background: SCS to unveil 10-year plan to close some schools, build new ones

That community input, as well as student achievement, equity, commitment, improvement, respect, communication and transparency were among ideals guiding the plan, Ray said Friday, which will also tackle a remaining $400 million in deferred building maintenance.

Much of that deferred maintenance can be addressed using the federal stimulus funding, Barker explained Monday. That will include a proposed $175 million toward improvements at all SCS-owned schools, to include charters and Achievement School District buildings, $100 million in HVAC improvements, $50 million in roof repairs, and additional improvements in IT, windows and water quality.

Additions to 13 schools, many to address issues with spacing, will be funded with $65 million in federal funds, he said.

Community pushback is expected with the plan, SCS has acknowledged. Orange Mound rallied around its Dunbar Elementary when it was on a closure list about five years ago; the school is still open today, but is slated again to close and move students to a new school by 2026. There was more pushback when a "footprint" consolidation plan was revealed nearly two years ago, at the end of Dorsey Hopson's tenure as superintendent. Ray was named interim superintendent that same week, and the plan, which would have closed 28 schools, built 10 schools and added on to five, was never seen through. Monday is the first time Ray's administration has revealed any new facilities plan.

The plan proposes more K-8 and 6-12 buildings, combinations of traditional elementary and middle and then middle and high schools. The strategy there comes from research around students and school building transitions, Barker, the deputy superintendent, explained after the district address last week. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

"When students transition from school to school, especially from elementary to middle and then middle to high, what happens is that sometimes there's this disconnect, and it takes them a little while to connect to that new school, new learning opportunities," Barker said. "...As you minimize those number of school transitions, what you do is maximize opportunities for kids to contain that learning and really transition more grade-to-grade rather than school-to-school."  

Which Memphis neighborhoods will get new SCS schools? 

SCS has proposed new schools are built in the following areas, to be completed in the following years and at the following costs:

  • New Frayser area high school, completed 2025, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Trezevant High School

  • New Treadwell K-8, completed 2026, cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Treadwell Elementary and Treadwell Middle Schools

  • New Orange Mound K-8, completed 2027, cost cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools

  • New Southeast High School, completed 2029, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Sheffield and Wooddale high Schools

  • New Raleigh School, grades 6-12, completed 2031, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools

  • Which SCS schools will get additions?

    SCS has proposed the following 13 schools receive building additions:

  • Brownsville Road Elementary
  • Booker T. Washington 6-12
  • Downtown Elementary School
  • Macon Hall Elementary School
  • Melrose High School
  • Mt. Pigsah Middle
  • Sheffield Elementary School
  • Shelby Oaks Elementary School
  • Snowden School
  • Raleigh-Bartlett Meadows Elementary School
  • Westhaven Elementary School
  • White Station High School
  • Willow Oaks Elementary School
  • Which SCS schools will close?

    SCS has proposed the following schools close under the new plan:

  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Carver High School

  • Shady Grove Elementary, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Dexter K-8 and White Station Elementary

The following buildings would likely close if proposed new school buildings are approved: 

  • Trezevant High School, students would go to the new Frayser high school
  • Treadwell Elementary and Middle Schools, students would go to the new Treadwell K-8
  • Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools, students would go to the new Orange Mound K-8
  • Sheffield and Wooddale High Schools, students would go to the new Southeast high school
  • Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools, students would go to the new Raleigh 6-12 school

Closed schools sites would receive memorial markers, according to the plan.

Additional building proposals

The following schools would likely receive new gyms, if plans are approved. The gyms would also be designed as community storm shelters, and are therefore proposed to be built using federal funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Below is a list of the schools and proposed gym completion date:

  • Belle Forest Elementary, August 2022
  • Cummings K-8, August 2022
  • Delano Elementary, December 2023
  • Douglass K-8, December 2024
  • Grahamwood Elementary, December 2023
  • Kingsbury Middle/High, January 2023
  • Richland Elementary, December 2023

Stadium upgrades are proposed for the following schools at the following completion times:

  • Halle Stadium, August 2022
  • Melrose Stadium, August 2024
  • Whitehaven Stadium, August 2022
  • Cordova Stadium, August 2024

Additionally, a STEM building at Whitehaven High School is proposed to be completed in 2024.

Some schools would receive new programming, zoning

Under the new plan, Kingsbury Middle and High Schools would become a combined 6-12 grade campus. Bolton High School would become a "world class" Agri-STEM campus with Barret's Chapel K-8 in August 2022.

SCS has proposed that Alton Elementary students go to A.B. Hill Elementary. The Alton school building would become an "Early Childhood Headquarters" by August 2022.

The district has also proposed that Maxine Smith STEAM Academy relocate to East High School by August 2022, expanding seats at Middle College High. 

The following schools would be rezoned under the plan: 

  • Brownsville Road Elementary would receive students from Dexter in August 2024
  • Cordova High would send students to Mt. Pisgah, a 6-12 school, in August 2022
  • Dexter K-8 would receive students from Shady Grove, White Station Elementary and White Station Middle beginning in August 2022
  • White Station Elementary would send students to Dexter in August 2024
  • White Station Middle would send students to Dexter in August 2024

Under the plan, the following schools would become "Community Hub" schools with increased wrap around services by 2022:

  • Northaven Elementary
  • Hamilton High
  • Manassas High
  • Melrose High
  • Westwood High
  • Woodstock Middle

The following SCS properties would be sold or developed under the plan: 

  • Grays Creek site and bus yard, located at 2800 Grays Creek Dr. 
  • Messick High, located at 703 South Greer St.
  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, located at 1266 Poplar Ave.
  • Shady Grove Elementary, located at 5360 Shady Grove Rd.

This is a developing story

SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new name, buildings, higher teacher pay

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Shelby County Schools wants to "reimagine" its footprint in Shelby County with a plan that proposes building five new schools and closing about 13 to 15 others, mostly through consolidation. The plan proposes additions to at least 13 existing schools. 

The plan, unveiled for the first time in a presentation to district board members Monday, includes phases of work to take place over the next 10 years, through 2031. Capital projects require funding and approval from the county commission, which is scheduled to see the plan during a meeting Wednesday. 

a group of people sitting on a bench: Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.© Ariel Cobbert/The Commercial Appeal Superintendent Joris Ray and 4th-grade student Yoselyn Mejia try out the new classroom learning space during a building tour of Alcy Elementary School in Memphis, Tenn., on Wednesday, April 7, 2021.

New schools are proposed for Frayser, Orange Mound and Raleigh, as well as Grahamwood and southeast Shelby County and include many K-8 and a 6-12 school models, meaning the new buildings will combine grade levels as they also combine communities of schools.

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A complete list of proposed new builds and closures are below. The school board would have to approve closures each year, officials explained, as they would have to approve each of the other proposed items on the plan.

The Commercial Appeal is reviewing the details of the plan released by the district and will update this story with specifics as they are discovered.

Critics of the plan may focus on potential closures and changes, Superintendent Joris Ray said Monday.

“But it’s so important to focus on the opportunities that are possible,” he said, acknowledging that those opportunities come with "tough decisions." 

He added: “Together we must believe. Together we must achieve. Together we are 901.”

'Reimagine 901': SCS 'reimagine' plan proposes new district name, school buildings, higher teacher pay

The facility plan shared in detail Monday is part of the district's larger "Reimagine 901" strategy, teased during Ray's second state of the district address last week. The plan also incorporates academic strategy, with proposals of expanded student programming with dual language, arts and advanced courses, more teachers for the district's youngest students and a sustainable salary schedule for teachers — who Ray wants to be the highest paid in Tennessee. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

Among many other academic initiatives, the plan includes the proposal for a 4-year grant program that will put schools on the path toward developing programs in one of three categories: leadership, social justice and environmental impact. Angela Whitelaw, deputy superintendent of academics, explained that each year over the next four years, schools will write proposals to create one of the three programs. SCS will select 40 schools each year, she said.

Facilities plan is long-awaited for SCS

SCS has received hundreds of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding, including the most recent and largest third installment of $503 million. While the funding can only be used for a specific set of projects, some building improvements, including improvements to ventilation, are accepted uses. The funding is a "game changer" in that respect, explained John Barker, deputy superintendent of finance and operations, allowing SCS to tackle parts of the project in ways they may not have been able to before. 

Funding: Nearly $620 million in COVID-19 relief funds headed to Shelby County area schools

County commissioners expected a long-term facility strategy from the district this time last year, but SCS didn't reveal such a plan once the pandemic took hold. The new "Reimagine 901" plan incorporates suggestions gathered from community input sessions held before the pandemic, officials say, and was revised up until Monday's presentation.

Background: SCS to unveil 10-year plan to close some schools, build new ones

That community input, as well as student achievement, equity, commitment, improvement, respect, communication and transparency were among ideals guiding the plan, Ray said Friday, which will also tackle a remaining $400 million in deferred building maintenance.

Much of that deferred maintenance can be addressed using the federal stimulus funding, Barker explained Monday. That will include a proposed $175 million toward improvements at all SCS-owned schools, to include charters and Achievement School District buildings, $100 million in HVAC improvements, $50 million in roof repairs, and additional improvements in IT, windows and water quality.

Additions to 13 schools, many to address issues with spacing, will be funded with $65 million in federal funds, he said.

Community pushback is expected with the plan, SCS has acknowledged. Orange Mound rallied around its Dunbar Elementary when it was on a closure list about five years ago; the school is still open today, but is slated again to close and move students to a new school by 2026. There was more pushback when a "footprint" consolidation plan was revealed nearly two years ago, at the end of Dorsey Hopson's tenure as superintendent. Ray was named interim superintendent that same week, and the plan, which would have closed 28 schools, built 10 schools and added on to five, was never seen through. Monday is the first time Ray's administration has revealed any new facilities plan.

The plan proposes more K-8 and 6-12 buildings, combinations of traditional elementary and middle and then middle and high schools. The strategy there comes from research around students and school building transitions, Barker, the deputy superintendent, explained after the district address last week. 

Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.© Laura Testino Shelby County Schools displays architectural proposals and inspiration for its 10-year "Reimagine 901" facilities plan shared with the board during an April 19, 2021, academic committee meeting.

"When students transition from school to school, especially from elementary to middle and then middle to high, what happens is that sometimes there's this disconnect, and it takes them a little while to connect to that new school, new learning opportunities," Barker said. "...As you minimize those number of school transitions, what you do is maximize opportunities for kids to contain that learning and really transition more grade-to-grade rather than school-to-school."  

Which Memphis neighborhoods will get new SCS schools? 

SCS has proposed new schools are built in the following areas, to be completed in the following years and at the following costs:

  • New Frayser area high school, completed 2025, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Trezevant High School

  • New Treadwell K-8, completed 2026, cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Treadwell Elementary and Treadwell Middle Schools

  • New Orange Mound K-8, completed 2027, cost cost $34 million

    The school would teach students from Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools

  • New Southeast High School, completed 2029, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Sheffield and Wooddale high Schools

  • New Raleigh School, grades 6-12, completed 2031, cost $89 million

    The school would teach students from Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools

  • Which SCS schools will get additions?

    SCS has proposed the following 13 schools receive building additions:

  • Brownsville Road Elementary
  • Booker T. Washington 6-12
  • Downtown Elementary School
  • Macon Hall Elementary School
  • Melrose High School
  • Mt. Pigsah Middle
  • Sheffield Elementary School
  • Shelby Oaks Elementary School
  • Snowden School
  • Raleigh-Bartlett Meadows Elementary School
  • Westhaven Elementary School
  • White Station High School
  • Willow Oaks Elementary School
  • Which SCS schools will close?

    SCS has proposed the following schools close under the new plan:

  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Carver High School

  • Shady Grove Elementary, proposed closing May 2022

    Students would go to Dexter K-8 and White Station Elementary

The following buildings would likely close if proposed new school buildings are approved: 

  • Trezevant High School, students would go to the new Frayser high school
  • Treadwell Elementary and Middle Schools, students would go to the new Treadwell K-8
  • Bethel Grove, Cherokee and Dunbar Elementary Schools, students would go to the new Orange Mound K-8
  • Sheffield and Wooddale High Schools, students would go to the new Southeast high school
  • Raleigh-Egypt Middle and High Schools, students would go to the new Raleigh 6-12 school

Closed schools sites would receive memorial markers, according to the plan.

Additional building proposals

The following schools would likely receive new gyms, if plans are approved. The gyms would also be designed as community storm shelters, and are therefore proposed to be built using federal funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Below is a list of the schools and proposed gym completion date:

  • Belle Forest Elementary, August 2022
  • Cummings K-8, August 2022
  • Delano Elementary, December 2023
  • Douglass K-8, December 2024
  • Grahamwood Elementary, December 2023
  • Kingsbury Middle/High, January 2023
  • Richland Elementary, December 2023

Stadium upgrades are proposed for the following schools at the following completion times:

  • Halle Stadium, August 2022
  • Melrose Stadium, August 2024
  • Whitehaven Stadium, August 2022
  • Cordova Stadium, August 2024

Additionally, a STEM building at Whitehaven High School is proposed to be completed in 2024.

Some schools would receive new programming, zoning

Under the new plan, Kingsbury Middle and High Schools would become a combined 6-12 grade campus. Bolton High School would become a "world class" Agri-STEM campus with Barret's Chapel K-8 in August 2022.

SCS has proposed that Alton Elementary students go to A.B. Hill Elementary. The Alton school building would become an "Early Childhood Headquarters" by August 2022.

The district has also proposed that Maxine Smith STEAM Academy relocate to East High School by August 2022, expanding seats at Middle College High. 

The following schools would be rezoned under the plan: 

  • Brownsville Road Elementary would receive students from Dexter in August 2024
  • Cordova High would send students to Mt. Pisgah, a 6-12 school, in August 2022
  • Dexter K-8 would receive students from Shady Grove, White Station Elementary and White Station Middle beginning in August 2022
  • White Station Elementary would send students to Dexter in August 2024
  • White Station Middle would send students to Dexter in August 2024

Under the plan, the following schools would become "Community Hub" schools with increased wrap around services by 2022:

  • Northaven Elementary
  • Hamilton High
  • Manassas High
  • Melrose High
  • Westwood High
  • Woodstock Middle

The following SCS properties would be sold or developed under the plan: 

  • Grays Creek site and bus yard, located at 2800 Grays Creek Dr. 
  • Messick High, located at 703 South Greer St.
  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, located at 1266 Poplar Ave.
  • Shady Grove Elementary, located at 5360 Shady Grove Rd.

This is a developing story and will be updated. 

Laura Testino covers education and children's issues for the Commercial A

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ppeal. Reach her at [email protected] or 901-512-3763. Find her on Twitter: @LDTestino

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details

and will be updated. 

Laura Testino covers education and children's issues for the Commercial Appeal. Reach her at [email protected] or 901-512-3763. Find her on Twitter: @LDTestino

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details

Laura Testino covers education and children's issues for the Commercial Appeal. Reach her at [email protected] or 901-512-3763. Find her on Twitter: @LDTestino

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details

School is proposed to be completed in 2024.

Some schools would receive new programming, zoning

Under the new plan, Kingsbury Middle and High Schools would become a combined 6-12 grade campus. Bolton High School would become a "world class" Agri-STEM campus with Barret's Chapel K-8 in August 2022.

SCS has proposed that Alton Elementary students go to A.B. Hill Elementary. The Alton school building would become an "Early Childhood Headquarters" by August 2022.

The district has also proposed that Maxine Smith STEAM Academy relocate to East High School by August 2022, expanding seats at Middle College High. 

The following schools would be rezoned under the plan: 

  • Brownsville Road Elementary would receive students from Dexter in August 2024
  • Cordova High would send students to Mt. Pisgah, a 6-12 school, in August 2022
  • Dexter K-8 would receive students from Shady Grove, White Station Elementary and White Station Middle beginning in August 2022
  • White Station Elementary would send students to Dexter in August 2024
  • White Station Middle would send students to Dexter in August 2024

Under the plan, the following schools would become "Community Hub" schools with increased wrap around services by 2022:

  • Northaven Elementary
  • Hamilton High
  • Manassas High
  • Melrose High
  • Westwood High
  • Woodstock Middle

The following SCS properties would be sold or developed under the plan: 

  • Grays Creek site and bus yard, located at 2800 Grays Creek Dr. 
  • Messick High, located at 703 South Greer St.
  • Tech High/Northwest Prep, located at 1266 Poplar Ave.
  • Shady Grove Elementary, located at 5360 Shady Grove Rd.

This is a developing story and will be updated. 

Laura Testino covers education and children's issues for the Commercial Appeal. Reach her at [email protected] or 901-512-3763. Find her on Twitter: @LDTestino

This article originally appeared on Memphis Commercial Appeal: SCS proposes building 5 schools, closing about 15, adding on to 13. Here are details



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