For Immediate Release: September 27, 2012
Mississippi Board of Education Votes to Ask Governor to Declare State of
JACKSON, Miss. – The Mississippi Board of Education (MBE) determined that an
extreme emergency situation exists in the Oktibbeha County School District. Acting on a
recommendation from the Mississippi Commission on School Accreditation, the MBE voted
unanimously to ask Gov. Phil Bryant to declare a state of emergency for the school district.
The Oktibbeha County School District faces many issues that jeopardize the safety, security
and educational interests of the children enrolled in its schools. The district is in violation
of 29 of the 30 accreditation standards the Mississippi Department of Education reviewed.
Most notably, the district has a history of poor student performance, and it has failed to report
complete and accurate data on employee contracts, lists of staff, payroll reports and official
“The academic needs of the students have not been met. East Oktibbeha County High School
has been classified as failing for the last three years with a QDI of less than 100 over that time
period,” Chairman of the State Board of Education Dr. Wayne Gann said. “In addition, the
leadership of the district has failed to resolve lingering accreditation issues.”
A state of emergency would allow the MBE to:
Remove the Superintendent and School Board Members
Place a conservator in the district
Request funds from the Legislative Emergency School Fund, and
Address budget needs
Officials from the Mississippi Department of Education will meet with the administration,
faculty and staff of the Okolona School District on Monday, Oct. 1 – followed by an evening
meeting with parents and community leaders to communicate a plan of action to assist the
district in meeting accreditation requirements.