Charleston, W.Va. - The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) Commission on School District Governance and Administration released its report after months of research, discussion and debate about how to balance the school system governance model to better focus on student achievement.
“Members of the commission were heavily student- and classroom-focused and became more so as we heard from numerous presenters and educational researchers,” said Commission Chair and WVBE Member Tom Campbell. “In the end, with the wide disparity of needs and culture and geography in West Virginia, the Commission favors keeping the local districts but changing their focus to be predominantly on quality student instruction. The final report includes several short- and long-term strategies that would allow school systems to largely focus on learning, especially at the site or classroom level."
The WVBE established the Commission on School District Governance and Administration in March 2013 following a request from Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to formally undertake a study of the governance of the 55 county school systems. Members of the commission include school officials and business representatives.
The group is emphasizing a vision of restructuring business and management functions to a regional level while maintaining and improving local input into instruction.
“There are no plans to eliminate the state’s 55 county school system structure but we are looking at ways to be more efficient and effective,” said Gayle Manchin, WVBE president. “For example, could county systems save money by merging administrative duties like finance and human resources? The money saved could go back to the classroom.”
For more information, contact Liza Cordeiro at the West Virginia Department of Education Communication Office at 304-558-2699.