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Mathews board opts for SBMA to update its strategic plan

By a 3-2 vote, the Mathews County School Board approved a proposal from the School Board Member Alliance to help the division update its strategic plan in the coming months.

Before deciding to go with SBMA, the school board also considered another proposal from the Berkley Group, a consulting firm located near Harrisonburg. School board members held a special meeting early Tuesday evening in the school board office to make its decision.

School board chairman Dr. Mari Gibbs and members Bobby Dobson and Calvin Morgan voted to approve the arrangement with SBMA; vice chair Linda Hodges and member Mary Kathryn Diggs, who both favored the Berkley Group’s proposal, cast the two nay votes.

“They definitely have two different approaches,” said Gibbs. SBMA, the chairman said, is “laser focused” on student achievement, while “Berkley Group has a broad philosophy and approach” involving more meetings with stakeholders over a longer period of time.

“Berkley Group could give us a more b...

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