2024 Legislative Priorities

An excellent early education experience for every child

  • Expanded access to state-funded pre-k programs
    • increase the early childhood education appropriation for FY2024 (ELCs and public pre-k)

An excellent teacher in every classroom

  • Teacher shortage – codify a plan to address Mississippi’s critical teacher shortage, which may include, but is not limited to:
    • teacher pay raise – codify a plan to keep Mississippi teacher pay competitive in the Southeast
    • expansion of the Winter-Reed Teacher Loan repayment program to allow participation by any teacher employed by a public school district
    • allowing retired teachers to return to the classroom full- or part-time while drawing their retirement income
    • a career ladder that allows teachers to stay in the classroom and be compensated at higher levels for additional leadership responsibilities
    • PRAXIS preparation assistance
  • Require the identification and publication of university/college teacher preparation programs that yield the highest growth outcomes in K-12 student achievement

An excellent public education for every Mississippi child

  • Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP) full funding – codify a plan to reach full funding of the MAEP no later than the 2025-2026 school year (FY2026), including a substantial increase in FY2025
  • Full funding of the special education add-on portion of the Mississippi Adequate Education Program
  • Maintain the current level of funding for lower elementary literacy coaches and math coaches
  • Funding for a pilot program to improve reading proficiency in grades 4 through 8
  • Amend the Educational Facilities Revolving Loan Fund statute to increase the per-district cap and remove the requirement that the funds be repaid
  • Amend the state school accountability statute to remove details of the model from statute

Public funds restricted to public schools (defeat of public school privatization measures)

  • Defeat all new voucher or tax credit scholarship proposals or expansions
  • Maintain and strengthen as necessary, accountability measures and restrictions on the existing ESA voucher program implemented as a result of SB 2594 in the 2020 Legislative Session
  • Implement accountability measures on any existing tax credit programs that direct public funds to private schools
  • Defeat measures that would alter the way school boards are elected. These are privatization measures, generally authored by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), that:
    • simplify the process by which privatizers take majority control of local school boards by having all seats elected simultaneously (not staggered), and
    • facilitate recruitment and funding of privatization candidates by out-of-state organizations and persons by aligning school board elections with presidential or gubernatorial elections, making it easy for out-of-state funders to identify when the elections are taking place

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