Lumberton schools prepare to consolidate under new law

Lumberton schools prepare to consolidate under new law

LUMBERTON, MS (WLOX) - Now that Gov. Phil Bryant has signed several school consolidation bills, the real work begins to eliminate four school districts around the state, including the Lumberton School District.

The first step will be meetings with the folding districts and the districts that will absorb the students and administration. The Lumberton district will be consolidated with Lamar County and Poplarville schools.

"There's still a lot of issues to be worked out. A commission of 11 people will study how to make the transition as smooth as possible. It's administrative consolidation first. Closing all district offices and transferring responsibilities to Lamar County School District," said Lumberton Superintendent Dr. Linda Smith.

A representative from the Mississippi Department of Education will oversee the consolidation meetings. Smith said the first transition meeting will take place sometime in the next 30 days.

Smith said the goal is to make the changes as smooth as possible but added the impact on students is a little less clear right now.

According to Smith, some Lumberton schools could eventually close. Most Lumberton students will end up at Lamar County schools, though some students will move to the Poplarville School District in Pearl River County.

The other districts consolidating are: Leflore County and Greenwood school districts; Montgomery County and Winona school districts, and administrative consolidation of Holmes county and Durant school districts

The district consolidations must be complete by July 2019.

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