Shelby County Schools now include Memphis students

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- The Memphis and Shelby County schools are now one, but the day will pass without fanfare.

Deputy Supt. David Stephens told The Commercial Appeal everyone is focused on Aug. 5, when classes begin.

Stephens described officials as "cautiously optimistic" that everything will be ready, including teachers, buildings, transportation, food service and technology.

Preparations have been underway since March of 2011, when city voters ratified the Memphis Schools Board of Education decision to surrender the city schools charter.

The unified school district came into being on Monday. The combined district has retained the name of Shelby County Schools, at least for now.

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