George County School District
School Board Election 2022
Our public education questionnaire was offered to school board candidates in the November 8 school board elections. Search below for responses from board districts that have opposing candidates. Unopposed candidates are not included.
Matthew K. Smith
Jessie D. Ludgood
7. Vouchers for private school tuition and online schools divert public funds away from public schools. Do you agree that tax dollars should be used for only public schools and not for non-public schools? Why or why not? I believe that public funds should be used for public education.
If there is a UNIQUE circumstance where a district is UNABLE to meet the needs of a child (such as: safety or mental health), the district should then work closely with the family to ensure that information is provided regarding resources that are available for the child/family.
Additionally, in a district where a student with disabilities cannot receive Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) in their Least Restrictive Environment (LRE), under IDEA the district is legally responsible for the financial obligation associated with the child’s educational placement. (Funds from public and private sources such as family insurance can also be used in funding resources that a child might require.)
It is my opinion that when a child is unable to receive FAPE in their home school, this should not be ‘a blank check’ for the parent to select a program that will put the district in an extreme hardship. The key is to provide the child with adequate services for the child to make progress.
Districts should make every effort to provide students with the resources and services needed to make progress in their home school. If the district offers adequate services for the child but the parents opt for a private placement, the cost of the private placement is then the parent’s financial responsibility.
9. Mississippi is experiencing a severe teacher shortage. What strategies will you support to recruit and retain high quality educators? I believe that our district needs to actively encourage and support district teacher assistants to complete the TA to Teacher programs that are available.