Shelby County to get out of Head Start - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Shelby County to get out of Head Start

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    Friday, October 4 2013 3:43 PM EDT2013-10-04 19:43:45 GMT
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DOWNTOWN MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

It was learned at Monday's Shelby County Commissioners meeting that the county wants out of the Head Start business and the commission won't run the Head Start program anymore.

The loss means that 600 people will be laid off from county government.

The hope the 600 pending layoffs is that these employees will be hired on by whatever entity will take over the Head Start program.

County Mayor Mark Luttrell told the commission that Porter-Leath will apply for the federal grant for the program. SCS, though undecided is expected to apply for the grant as well.

MORE: Commission accepts $90M jail healthcare contract

Some on the commission said this should be about the children, not the adults. Still, those employees are not happy about the change.

"They recently just became vested in this pension plan and it took them 7.5 years," said Gail Tyree of AFSCME. "Now we think it's a little unfair that they won't get an opportunity to stay under the Shelby County pension plan because now they have to start over."

"That's why we're here at this point right now, that it wasn't being run right," said Commissioner Terry Roland. "So anybody would want what's best for the children."

The deadline to bid on running Head Start is later this month.

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