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OurView — No logic in moving students close to FHS

Last week the Knox County Schools administrators let residents in five select areas of West Knox County know that the KCS is considering moving their rising eighth graders from Farragut High School to Karns High School in an effort to ease the overcrowding at Farragut High.

With less than 16 weeks to prepare, many residents are up in arms as to the poor manner in which the KCS chose to notify them. Citing that their children have already registered for classes and for some the sole reason they bought their houses in this area was because the property lay in the Farragut school district — a district that doesn’t technically exist in the eyes of the town of Farragut or the KCS.

But with time growing short and enrollment at Farragut anticipated to be higher next year than this year, Principal Ed Hedgepeth of Farragut High School is faced with the prospect of paying out a $50,000 a day fine for non-compliance with the Better Education Program. This is something that no one with or without children can afford.

Much has been said in open forum about how KCS has drug its feet building a new high school in West Knox County — a project that has been on the KCS capital improvement list for some 20 years.

To sit back and cast stones at KCS for not building a school 10 or 20 years ago is simply a waste of time and breath. The problem is here and now with no simple solution in sight.

The logical plan would be to move students to the less crowded Karns campus, which is slotted for a $3 million expansion beginning this summer, but not move students who live a mere two to five miles from Farragut High School. There is no logic in that.

As a caller to presstalk points out this week, the schools are the instruments of the Knox County Schools system and not the instruments of the town of Farragut, the City of Knoxville, or for that matter, Knox County. The drawing of school zones is up to the discretion of that body of government in which the taxpayers have placed their trust — KCS and the Knox County Board of Education.

Let’s hope that the members of that body of government will put their heads together and come up with a more equitable solution.


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