A new organization is being created to inform people of Mississippi whether their legislators are voting to quote “fully fund education.” In announcing this group, its founders implied that the only measure of whether a legislator supports education is if they vote to fund the current system of public schools, regardless of how the money is actually spent. They seem to be for more spending, even if it doesn’t produce better results.
Public school spending in Mississippi increased by more than a billion dollars from 1996 to 2005. But test scores just released by the U.S. Department of Education show that science scores over that same period of time have not changed at all in Mississippi.
Competition is the essential element in improving the price and quality of goods and services. It’s a curious thing to me how many business leaders believe this principle until the topic turns to education. For some reason, they treat education as if it were immune to the benefits of competition. They defend the current system rather than embracing an approach that would allow parents to choose schools that best meet their children’s needs.
In the past 15 years, the number of charter schools in the United States has grown from fewer than ten to more than 3,600, and the number of students attending these schools has gone from hundreds to more than a million.
As the Coast rebuilds, there is an excellent opportunity for new schools to be created with special emphases.
Have you ever heard of a public school being built at no cost to the taxpayers? That�s exactly what happened in our nation�s capital, in a deal that may have some merit in Mississippi school districts affected by Hurricane Katrina.
Mississippi has so far escaped lawsuits over public school financing. Suits in other states have focused on whether school funding was [quote] "adequate." Setting aside for a moment whether it�s appropriate for a court to decide this rather than a legislature, one problem with these suits is that adequacy is an entirely subjective standard.
School district consolidation is a hot topic among some budget-conscious leaders in Jackson, and Bolivar County is the most-often-used poster child in those discussions. With six districts within its borders, Bolivar County has more districts than any other county in the state.