Parents weigh in on state failing schools list - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Parents weigh in on state failing schools list

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Source: MGN Online Source: MGN Online

Under the Accountability Act, parents can get tax credits worth about $3,500 annually if they choose to send their child to a private school. Parents who want to transfer their child have to notify the school system by August 1st. The tax credit law doesn't apply to students who are already in private schools even though they're zoned for a failing public school.

Parents in the Tennessee Valley said they are aware of the tax credit, but not all of them can take advantage of this opportunity so they are weighing their options to save their child's academic future.  

Julie Ridgway said she was blown away when the state released its list of what they consider failing schools.  Her daughter just graduated from one of the schools on the list, Lakewood Elementary and will start 6th grade at another school on the list, Davis Hills Middle.  

"I looked and I thought this is not good. What do I do? Where do I send her? Then I looked at the list and I said Ed White Middle is on there, so is Westlawn Middle.  My options are limited," she said.   

Ridgway knows about the tax credit that parents can get if they send their children to private schools or public ones that aren't considered failing.

"It would be a good idea for her to go into a school that might push her even more but I couldn't do that," she said. "I couldn't even afford to I am unemployed at the moment. A tax credit is a tax credit you have to wait another year to get it and maybe that will help for the next year, but for now it's not helping at all."

Ridgway said now that the list has been released, she has some homework.  

"I am going to have to really look into what we are going to do as far as her educational needs and reach out to someone who can help get her into a school where she can excel and move forward," she said. 

In the meantime, she said this list should serve as a reminder that everyone needs to work together to improve education.

"Parents and educators all need to work together to get our schools where they need to be so we won't have this issue where they are all failing schools."

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