Speaker Gunn and Lt. Governor Reeves held a press conference today to announce that they have hired a firm, EdBuild, to “examine” our state’s school funding formula, the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP), saying, “More tax dollars are needed in the classroom…” We agree that the state has done a poor job of providing for our children’s education.
We have done some looking into the firm the Legislature has hired for the revamp, and there are some red flags. Here is an interesting quote from Rebecca Sibilia, the CEO of EdBuild, touting bankruptcy as a means to improve schools: “When you think about bankruptcy…this is like a, this is a huge opportunity for school districts. And this is something that EdBuild is going to focus on. Like bankruptcy is not a problem for kids; bankruptcy is a problem for the people governing the system, right?…And so, you’ve heard it first: bankruptcy might be, like, the thing that leads to the next education revolution.”
The leadership’s news release advocates a “student-based funding formula.” The American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, the DC-based corporate bill mill that lobbies for school privatization, is pushing model legislation called the “ Student Centered Funding Act. ” Needless to say, we will be watching this process closely. According to the release, public meetings to discuss the funding formula will be announced at a later date. We’ll let you know when they are scheduled; something tells us you might want to attend.
As we learn more about this process, we promise to keep you in the loop. We’re so glad our children have you in their corner!