CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The West Virginia Board of Education voted Wednesday for the state to continue control of Preston County Schools due to ongoing problems with finances, facilities and other areas.
The school system has shown slight progress, though, according to the Office of Education Performance Audits, and subsequently was granted local control of district policies and the operation of the school calendar.
Ongoing problems cited in the report include decreasing student test scores, the lack of an adequate system to analyze data and a flawed teacher evaluation process.
The main concern for the state Department of Education is still the county's financial troubles.
The school district currently has a deficit of more than $2 million. The county has slightly decreased its school personnel to save some funding and has cut into the deficit by about $430,000 when compared to last year.
But the recent failure of an excess levy in Preston County could make recovering those funds even more difficult.
Voters in Preston County chose not to renew a $1.7 million excess levy to provide for school maintenance operations.
The levy would've taken care of fees associated with school construction, transportation and technology assistance.
Preston County Superintendent Larry Parsons thinks voters did not realize the implications of not passing the levy, and said with many in the area hit-hard after Superstorm Sandy, voters weren't in the mood to give up more money.