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Henry County School leaders will have to decide how to use city schools

Updated: May. 27, 2021 at 5:50 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - There’s a long road ahead of the Henry County School board when it comes to determining what to do with three city school buildings that will belong to the county, and with reversion coming in 2022, Henry County’s superintendent says time is not in their favor.

Like other Henry County and Martinsville residents, Henry County Schools superintendent Sandy Strayer wanted to know the localities’ plans for schools after reversion.

“As everyone else, we received the information last night and I know moving forward we’ll have to make a lot of decisions.”

It is outlined that Albert Harris Elementary, Martinsville Middle and High school buildings will be given to the county, while other school buildings will be redeveloped by Martinsville.

It’ll be left up to the county school board to determine how to use them.

Strayer says, “We’ll have to look at the structure of everything, the facilities, review staffing and facilities then make a decision moving forward.”

The County Board of Supervisors brought up the possibility of Martinsville High School closing after reversion.

The school district consolidated four high schools into Manga Vista and Bassett in 2005. Strayer says lessons from that process will be used as the board makes a decision in the future.

“As we move through all those past experiences, what did is look at what is best for children and that what decisions were made, that provided new and advance opportunities.”

Henry County and Martinsville will apply for a grant from the Harvest foundation to conduct a study on racial and economic equity and education quailty.

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