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Sullivan BOE perplexed by city taking ‘offers’ off the table

November 3rd, 2013 10:23 pm by Rick Wagner

Sullivan BOE perplexed by city taking ‘offers’ off the table

BLOUNTVILLE — Can an offer be taken off the table when it never was officially on the table? 

Sullivan County school officials said at a school board work session Thursday they are a bit puzzled that Kingsport school officials have “withdrawn” or taken off the table “offers” to assume operation of Colonial Heights Middle School and Innovation Academy, given that neither proposal was in writing.

The city board didn’t vote on the offers, including the Colonial Heights offer city Superintendent Lyle Ailshie made at the end of a city school board meeting this summer.

However, some Sullivan County Board of Education members, including Betty Combs of Bluff City, said later in public meetings they had no interest in Kingsport assuming control of Colonial Heights Middle. The offer Ailshie outlined was made for the 2013-14 school year.

“It was never on the table,” County Director of Schools Jubal Yennie told the county BOE at the Thursday work session, saying much of the information he knew about the idea came from newspaper article and questions from a newspaper reporter.

“People are thinking the board has received an offer and summarily dismissed it,” Yennie said.

He said his response to the Colonial Heights idea was “interesting.” 

“We don’t normally take offers ... from a newspaper article,” BOE Vice Chairman Jack Bales said.

For an expanded version of this article, please see Monday's print edition or our expanded electronic edition.

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