IT IS A STATE OF EMERGENCY FOR SCHOOLS IN ALLENDALE COUNTY. TODAY, SOUTH CAROLINA SUPERINTENDENT OF EDUCATION, MOLLY SPEARMAN, ANNOUNCED ALL OF THE SCHOOLS WILL BE TAKEN OVER BY THE STATE. THE CHANGE OF POWER COMES JUST WEEKS AFTER SPEARMAN MET WITH COMMUNITY TO DISCUSS THE URGENT SITUATION. NEWSCHANNEL 6’S STEFANY BORNMAN WAS THERE WHEN THE DECISION WAS MADE. . STEFANY LL INTRO – ONE OF THE BIGGEST ISSUES THE STATE SUPERINTENDENT SAYS SHE HAD WITH ALLENDALE COUNTY SCHOOLS WAS THAT THERE WAS NO PLAN IN PLACE TO IMPROVE. AFTER YEARS OF INSTABILITY SHE DECIDED IT WAS TIME TO TAKE OVER. STEFANY: ALLENDALE COUNTY SCHOOLS ARE ENTERING A NEW ERA UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION. STEFANY: STATE SUPERINTENDENT MOLLY SPEARMAN SAYS SHE COULDN’T JUST SIT BACK AND WATCH STUDENTS GET LEFT BEHIND, BECAUSE OF POOR DECISION-MAKING BY SCHOOL LEADERS. MOLLY SPEARMAN/ SOUTH CAROLINA SUPERINTENDENT “IT SEEMS THAT EDUCATION HAS BEEN ABOUT SERVING THE ADULTS AND THEIR INTEREST RATHER THAN THE NEEDS OF THE STUDENTS.” STEFANY: ALLENDALE RECEIVES 17-THOUSAND DOLLARS PER STUDENT, THE HIGHEST IN SOUTH CAROLINA. DESPITE THE EXTRA FUNDING AND 3 ADDITIONAL FULLTIME TRANSFORMATION COACHES, THE DISTRICT HAS FAILED TO PRODUCE RESULTS. STEFANY: PROMPTING SPEARMAN TO DECLARE THE SCHOOL DISTRICT UNDER A STATE OF EMERGENCY. MOLLY SPEARMAN/ SOUTH CAROLINA SUPERINTENDENT “TO HELP LEAD OUR EFFORTS IN ALLENDALE I HAVE APPOINTED DR. WALTER TOBIN SENIOR AN EXPERIENCED AND WELL RESPECTED DISTRICT ADMINISTRATOR TO SERVE AS DISTRICT SUPERINTENDENT, EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY.” STEFANY: HOWEVER, THIS ISN’T THE FIRST TIME ALLENDALE SCHOOLS HAVE BEEN RUN OUT OF COLUMBIA. STEFANY: STILL, SPEARMAN SAYS THIS TIME IT’S DIFFERENT BECAUSE OF THE DISTRICTS RISKY FINANCIAL DECISIONS. THAT WOULD PUT THE REST OF THE STATE IN JEOPARDY OF LOSING FEDERAL EDUCATION GRANTS. STEFANY: WITH THE APPOINTMENT OF A NEW DISTRICT SUPERINTENDENT, SPEARMAN IS HOPING TO PUT AN END TO THE CONSTANT CHANGE IN LEADERSHIP AND BRING SOME STABILITY TO ALLENDALE. MOLLY SPEARMAN/ SOUTH CAROLINA SUPERINTENDENT “I WANT TO SEE STUDENT ACADEMIC GROWTH, I WANT TO SEE STUDENTS’, PARTICULARLY AT THE HIGH SCHOOL LEVEL, I WANT TO SEE STUDENTS DOING BETTER ON THEIR END OF COURSE TEST, THAT SHOULD MATCH UP WITH THE GRADUATION RATE. RIGHT NOW THE GRADUATION RATE IS MUCH HIGHER.” STEFANY LL TAG – THERE’S NO WORD ON HOW LONG THE STATE IS GOING TO BE IN CONTROL OF ALLENDALE COUNTY SCHOOLS, BUT THE STATE SUPERINTENDENT SAYS SHE WILL BE HOSTING MONTHLY COMMUNITY MEETINGS TO UPDATE PARENTS. REPORTING IN COLUMBIA, STEFANY BORNMAN WJBF NEWSCHANNEL 6.