Count day attendance not dooming district - WNEM TV 5

Count day attendance not dooming district

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FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

A no-go on the H-2-O.

Signs like this block the use of Flint school water fountains.

"Having conversations about students as priority while this is happening," said School Board President Isaiah Oliver.

On Tuesday night, school board members echoed the community’s growing frustrations.

"We get hit with something like water, you can't plan for that," said board member Roneeka Pleasant-Brown.

The polluted water is certainly an added hurdle as the district works to meet its student enrollment goal.

On Tuesday, the first student count day, that number fell short.

With only 5,430 students reporting to school on Tuesday, that’s a more than 300 fewer students than the district planned for in its deficit elimination plan.

The school district estimates that to be $2.1 million in funding.

Bilal Tawwab has been Flint's superintendent for just two months.

"I always plan to stay as far away from the classroom as I can, that's sacred ground, for me," Tawwab said.

Tawwab said the news isn’t a doomsday scenario. But he said if the numbers don’t improve, he’ll look at other ways to cut.

One potential option: one centralized, city high school.

"That may come, into the conversation, but that is not a decision I want to make as one entity, that's going to be a community decision," Tawwab said.

But Tawwab said he’s been assured by the state it will make sure the district adheres to the DEP, but it will also take into account student achievement.

"I feel as if the treasury is definitely going to be supporting our district moving forward," Tawwab said.

Just last week, State Superintendent Brian Whiston said he doesn’t expect a state takeover and that he likes the district’s momentum.

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