Clinton Schools Saved; But What's Next?

Clinton (WVLT) - Clinton City School Administrators are rejoicing today after the public voted to keep the schools open.

About 1,200 voters said no to turning over management of the Clinton City Schools to Anderson County.
Only 458 were in favor of the consolidation of schools.

So what does this mean for your children and the three elementary schools now? Volunteer TV's Lauren Davis has some answers:

The biggest question is funding--If more is coming and where it's coming from.

Director of Clinton City School Vickie Violette says she's going to explore different avenues.
Clinton City Manager Steve Jones says there's no promise for additional funding.

For the last year a dark cloud has hovered over Clinton City Elementary School, but today there was excitement in the air.

Dr. Violette says, "The city has spoken loudly and clearly they want a school system."

But with dwindling funding flowing into the system, where will they get more money?

Dr. Violette says, "It's just a matter now of prioritizing and putting needs before wants."

Dr. Violette is applying for grants and she'll approach the city council as budget talks blossom this spring.

"We're hoping with I-75 gets earmarked money for growth." she says.

Clinton City Elementary teachers think the system should get more cash from the city.

Clinton Elementary teacher Lee Ousley says, "Our system receives 5 percent from the city and others get 22-25 percent in fact Oak Ridge gets 25 percent so we need to meet somewhere in the middle."

But City Manager Steve Jones doesn't agree, saying, "We're 9th out of 136 as far as expenditures we're one of the richest systems in the state."

As far as the school getting more funding from the city, Jones says, "The city council will take a look at all the needs of the city."

But for now the Clinton City Schools are celebrating their future after learning their doors will remain open.

Three new school board members were voted into office yesterday. In addition, Clinton City Schools now have a certified accountant.
City Manager Steve Jones says he believes both of those will elminate some of the mistrust between City Council and the school board.


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