JCPS gets a few more days to respond to KDE settlement

RAW VIDEO: Commissioner Lewis discusses possible JCPS settlement

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - No deal as of now.

The state offered Jefferson County Public Schools a settlement to potentially avoid a heated takeover. The deadline for the offer was August 1 and now JCPS has a few more days to give the state an answer.

JCPS sent a statement on Wednesday saying, "the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) has expressed an interest in settling this case. District leadership spoke with KDE and Interim Commissioner Lewis, and Dr. Lewis asked that we have an answer to them by next week."

Interim Education Commissioner Dr. Wayne Lewis said on Wednesday that he had a good conversation with JCPS Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio and the state will consider anything that JCPS sends them.

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JCPS board members who spoke with WAVE 3 News on Wednesday said they don't have an answer right away because a decision of this magnitude cannot be made over night. The decision would impact over 100,000 students.

Diane Porter, Chairwoman of Jefferson County Board of Education, sent a statement to WAVE 3 news regarding the decision:

"The Kentucky Department of Education hearings are scheduled to start September 10. We anticipate additional Board discussions next week. We expect to have ongoing conversations with KDE about moving forward with the best plan for educating our students."

Lewis told WAVE 3 News the settlement offer would give the state more oversight and would include an audit in the fall of 2019 in which he would make another recommendation to whether the state should go into state assistance/state management. Lewis added that if issues are addressed the state would walk away.

"The terms of this agreement give us something that is neither state assistance or state management," Lewis said. "It's something that does not exist in Kentucky statute or regulations and so this is the result of out-of-the-box thinking."

The next JCPS board meeting is Tuesday, Aug. 7.

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