Vision 20/20: Elementary and Middle School Options Taking Shape

By: Ginger Carver, Marketing & PR Specialist, Jackson-Madison County School System on Oct 16, 2015

Consultants for the Jackson-Madison County School System gave a presentation to the Board at a special-called work session on Tuesday that outlined where the Vision 2020 plan currently stands. Public feedback has given overwhelming support to the idea of providing one K-8 alternative to the traditional K-5 elementary and 6-8 middle school models in each cluster of the school system. The Board must now determine what the details of the implementation of such a plan would look like and ask any questions they may have pertaining to this option.

Although the elementary/middle school plans are coming into focus, feedback in regards to the high school options has prompted more questions with additional alternatives and calculations to be reviewed. 

“We have received mixed feedback from the community regarding the best direction for JMCSS high schools,” said Bosman. “The Board has requested that we provide them with additional information and data that will help them determine what will provide the greatest good for the most students and for the community as a whole.”

JMCSS has numerous goals for the next three months, many of which fit into three broad fields of focus:

• Potential reallocation of resources to enhance student education
• Tentative construction and building modification costs
• Possible transportation impacts and savings

A major component of accomplishing these goals is a concentrated effort to work closely with principals in order to make sure every vital aspect of what is ahead for each school is given the proper consideration. Principals will work with the Superintendent to verify enrollment projections, space and programmatic needs at each school in the coming days. The Superintendent and Central Office staff will then prioritize programmatic improvements to the District and establish the cost and possible timeline of each. Other upcoming plans include the  formation of school-involved committees to consider needs as a result of the possible outcomes of Vision 2020 and discussions on opportunities to repurpose facilities.

“I look forward to working closely with our principals to examine how the outcomes of Vision 2020 will impact each unique school,” said Dr. Verna Ruffin, JMCSS Superintendent. “We must not lose sight of the fact that each school in our district has different needs and requires specific attention to reach its full potential.”

The Board recognizes there is much more work to be done. The long-range planning committee will now take the lead in this process. The dates listed below provide a timeline for the next steps for Vision 2020:

• Oct. 26:  Long-range planning committee meeting
• Nov. 9:  Board meeting with another update from Kimley-Horn
• Nov. 23:  Board retreat to discuss Vision 2020 Alternatives
• Dec. 1-4:  Public open houses
• Dec. 7-10:  Board scheduled to make a decision regarding Vision 2020

To stay aware of the latest updates to Vision 2020 and for a place to provide your own input, please visit

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