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Schools Consolidation Is Back In Federal Court

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Tensions are mounting yet again in regard to school consolidation.  The Shelby County Commission filed suit to stop referendums on municipal schools, alleging that part of the intent is to create racially segregated schools.  All parties will appear before federal Judge Hardy Mays on Monday.

The issue before the court this time is whether or not to allow the suburbs outside of Memphis to hold referendums asking voters whether they want their own, separate municipal school districts.  Last year, Mays ruled on most areas of the suit, except on the issue of starting municipal school districts before Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools merge to create a unified school district.  Mays said the issue wasn’t ripe at that time, but now it is.

Early voting begins on Friday, July 13, and Election Day is Thursday, August 2. 

Memphis Daily News Senior Reporter Bill Dries says it’s hard to tell how Mays will rule.  He may call of the election, or he may decide to have the Shelby County Election Commission hold off on certifying the election until he decides the case.