WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Extra Authority for School Supt. during Pandemic

Mar 31, 2020

The Macomb Board of Education agreed to grant extra authority to Superintendent Patrick Twomey during the coronavirus pandemic. However, Dr. Twomey must still consult with one of the school board’s officers before taking any action.

The extra authority pertains to a couple areas:

  • School Resources: Twomey said he can now act quickly if the community needs a school facility. For example, he said the school district is currently making hundreds of meals each day at the high school.  “If there was a larger community need and we needed to produce meals for people other than our students, we certainly have the resources and the capability of doing that. But under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t have the authority to designate our school facility to become a larger production kitchen for those kinds of purposes.”
  • Graduation Requirements: Twomey said some flexibility is needed to take into account the state order to shut down school buildings in an attempt to prevent spread of the novel coronavirus. “Part of that is now making decisions about seniors in high school, juniors in high school, how this affects our ability to put them in a certain place at a certain time. Kids haven’t been in school since the middle of March. How might we look at graduation requirements and give ourselves some flexibility there?”

Twomey said he will be meeting with his administrative team to begin formulating ideas about possible adjustments to graduation requirements.

The board approved the changes during an emergency meeting Monday morning.

This story was produced by Tri States Public Radio.  TSPR relies on financial support from our readers and listeners in order to provide coverage of the issues that matter to west central Illinois, southeast Iowa, and northeast Missouri. As someone who values the content created by TSPR's news department please consider making a financial contribution.