Certainly that's much larger than the current seven-member suburban-only Shelby County Schools board and also the nine-member Memphis City Schools board. With 16 total members for about 150,000 total students, the sum of the two systems board members is still smaller than the proposed new board. An important point -- the commissioners are saying up front they want to eventually shrink the size of a unified countywide board to a more manageable number. But is that such a great idea? Much is being made, especially from suburban opponents of the merger, about the need for more neighborhood accountability and empowerment. Going by that logic, would you not want fewer voters per school member?
Talk amongst yourselves about that one. In the meantime, also consider the size of boards for private schools. Putting ye olde Google machine to use, see the following schools and their number of board members.
- Briarcrest: 16 members of their Board of Trustees.
- Christian Brothers: 18 board members.
- Harding Academy: 18 board members, plus 11 alumni board members.
- St. Mary's Episcopal School: 25 board members, plus another nine ex-officio, at-large or emeriti members.