State superintendent Dr. Carey Wright has announced that she will ask the Mississippi Board of Education to suspend all testing and accountability requirements for the 2019-2020 school year in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The Board of Education will meet virtually at 10 a.m. on Thursday, March 19, and the public is encouraged to watch the livestream of the meeting.
The Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) will continue to work with state officials as the pandemic evolves, and, if schools are closed for an extended period of time, Dr. Wright has said she will recommend to the Board that all applicable policies regarding attendance, promotion, and graduation be waived. See the MDE news release.
Governor Reeves has declared a state of emergency and has asked that all schools extend spring break for a week to give officials time to assess the situation and plan the best course of action for the safety of students, teachers, and communities. He also has asked that schools continue to provide free and reduced price lunches to students and that we all do our part to limit the spread of the virus, including avoiding meetings of 10 people or more.
As of this afternoon, the Mississippi Legislature is continuing to meet. We are monitoring those activities and will continue to keep you in the loop as events unfold.
Be assured that, even in these unsettling times, The Parents’ Campaign is still on the job full time! We are paying close attention to legislative and policy decisions that affect the students and teachers in our public schools, and we are providing information to state leaders as we all work to achieve the best possible outcomes for our children and our state. We are doing our part to limit the spread of the coronavirus by working remotely and encouraging social distancing practices among our staff. So, while you won’t find us at our Jackson office, you can reach us by email or phone and can find updates on our web site and on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
As we learn of decisions that affect public schools statewide, we will keep you posted. Please also watch for notifications from your local school district concerning school closures, meals for children, expectations and resources for students while schools are closed, etc. The Mississippi Department of Education is posting information about school closures on its School Closure Tracker.
Please take care of yourself and your loved ones in these trying times. We are so very thankful to have you standing in the gap for the children of Mississippi and our public schools, and, together, we will emerge from this hard time stronger than before. After all, together, we’ve got this!