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School board to vote on contract on Wednesday

DULUTH - Following its annual legislative meeting with Gwinnett's state delegates, the Gwinnett County Board of Education will meet Wednesday morning at Shorty Howell Park to vote on the district's proposed Investing in Educational Excellence (IE2) Partnership Contract.

The special-called meeting, scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, will take place in the activity building classroom at Shorty Howell Park at 2750 Pleasant Hill Road in Duluth.

Hundreds of teachers, parents and community members on Thursday attended the school board's public hearing on the plan, which would grant schools flexibility from some state mandates in exchange for increased accountability in student achievement beyond what is required to make Adequate Yearly Progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

Those who addressed the board Thursday evening criticized a process they called secretive and urged the school board to seek further input from the community before taking action on the partnership contract.

Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks said previously he anticipates sending the proposed Partnership Contract's strategic plan to the state Board of Education for consideration at its January meeting. He said the strategic plan will set the parameters for the IE2 Partnership Contract, but the details of how this will be implemented in local schools has not been decided.