Alleghany County Public Schools and Covington City Public Schools officially merge

Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 11:16 PM EDT
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COVINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) - Alleghany County Public Schools, Covington City Public Schools and Jackson River Technical Center are officially Alleghany Highlands Public Schools as of July 1.

The Alleghany County Board of Supervisors and Covington City Council agreed on the merger in late 2020; it was then approved by the Virginia Board of Education in January 2021.

Thursday night, the community gathered to celebrate the change and all the positives they say will come with it.

“Both of these school divisions are really institutions in our community and they’ve done a fine, fine job for a long period of time. It’s exciting to pool those resources and it’s really going to benefit our kiddos, which is the most important thing,” said Kim Halterman, superintendent of Alleghany County Public Schools.

The school leaders said this is a change that has been discussed for many years and they are confident it is all going to work.

”This has worked, and it is going to work, and it’s going to be a great, great school division for our community,” said Melinda Snead-Johnson, superintendent of Covington City Public Schools.

Most of the work for the 2022-2023 school year will involve merging of the education leadership. AHPS will have a joint seven-person school board, four from Alleghany County and three from Covington City.

In the 2023-2024 school year, the students will begin to go to a joint high school and middle school. There will not be changes to any of the current elementary schools.

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