Getting to Know Representative Phillip Gunn

Introduction to the Presumptive Speaker-Elect   According to recent news reports, Rep. Phillip Gunn (R-Clinton) is the GOP choice to become the first Republican Speaker of the House since Reconstruction.  If he does become the next speaker, he will have tremendous influence on whether the Mississippi…

For Ed Wonks: Two New Studies Released

Studies Focus on Professional Development and Teacher Evaluations The Center for American Progress has released two new studies on teachers. I think both are interesting and thought you might be interested, too. The first study about teacher professional development highlights what many of us in…

Dropouts Up; Grad Rate Dips

By Therese Apel  Clarion Ledger–May 6, 2011 Mississippi’s public high school graduation rate dipped slightly in 2010 from the previous year, according to data released Wednesday by the state Department of Education. The dropout rate for the class of 2010 is 17 percent, up from…

Long Time Education Advocates Call For State Pre-K

By Jeffrey Hess  Mississippi Public Broadcasting–April 26, 2011 A new report shows that Mississippi is among a handful of states that does not offer state sponsored pre-kindergarten education. It has been almost 30 years since Mississippi became the last state to offer kindergarten education. MPB’s…

Mississippi – Rights at Risk

By Human Rights Watch  Human Rights Watch–March 9, 2011 Human Rights Watch has issued a publication outlining the Rights at Risk for Mississippi including overall Health, Education and Development. From the Executive Summary: The factors identified in this report are not the only contributors to…

K-12 Accountability: State Accountability Labels Released

In September, the State Board of Education released accountability labels for schools and districts based on the previously released 2009-2010 data.  The labels, which brilliant editorial cartoonist Marshall Ramsey equated to flotation devices, are based on a combination of a school’s “Quality Distribution Index” score,…

Higher Education in the News

A new report from the American Institute for Research (AIR) highlights the alarming amount of state and federal funds that are spent on students that dropout of college after their first year.  The report, entitled “Finishing the First Lap: The Cost of First-Year Student Attrition…

More Troubling Statistics for the CHART Initiative

While our previous updates about the CHART Initiative have focused heavily on teen childbearing, MSF also recognizes that sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are also a major problem among Mississippi teenagers.  According to health statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control, Mississippi leads the nation…

MSF Member Interest Survey Results

The members of Mississippi First have spoken!  The MSF staff would like to thank everyone that completed the Member Interest Survey this past month.  The responses we’ve received from our members will be used to guide our policy work over the coming year.  We will…