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STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – It’s been nearly a month since the Oktibbeha County School District was taken over by the state and a conservator assigned to manage it.

Conservator Dr. Jayne Sargent says her number one priority has been organization and students.

Dr. Jayne Sargent came to Starkville from Jackson to improve how the district operates and ensure that students are learning.  Some of the violations cited by the state included having a partial list of employees, incomplete employee contracts and ineligible students being allowed to participate in graduation activities. The community expressed concern about being under conservatorship but Sargent wants the public to know that her first priority has been student achievement.

“I have started to talk to principals and teachers quite honestly about an evaluation tool that we will be using to make sure that we have what I consider competence. I want to be sure that the first thing is that children are learning at the levels that they deserve and that their parents expect,” says Sargent.

Dr. Sargent will manage the district until mid-December of this year.

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