Joyner: Sides farther apart in schools mediation - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Joyner: Sides farther apart in schools mediation

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

The suburbs and the county are still in talks to reach a compromise on municipal schools, but negotiations appear to be sliding backwards.

Mediation sessions started back up after the holidays and it seemed progress was being made.

Collierville Mayor Stan Joyner said Tuesday the sides seemed to be farther apart. The suburban mayors met with their attorneys and were surprised by how the negotiations were viewed by the other side, the mayor added.

"Some have said we're making progress on some particular issues," Mayor Joyner said. "I think after our meeting (Tuesday) we may have regressed a bit on agreements we thought we had reached.  Things from the other side have come back and they're different than what our understanding of those agreements were at prior meetings."

READ: Suburban augments in municipal schools federal case
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Joyner says he can't get into details about what sticking points are at issue, but all along the crux of the issue has been autonomy for the suburban schools, and how much control the county is willing to concede.

While these negotiations continue, federal Judge Samuel "Hardy" Mays, Jr., is considering the latest round of arguments. Last week the suburbs had to submit new arguments on why the laws that allow schools are unconstitutional.

The county and city are arguing the laws that allow municipal schools are constitutional.

In November 2012, Judge Mays ruled in favor of the county on the municipal schools case, Which means Memphis and Shelby County Schools will consolidate, for now.

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