Home » NEWS » Education » Bryant forms coalition to develop collaborative plan to improve Jackson Public Schools

Bryant forms coalition to develop collaborative plan to improve Jackson Public Schools

Gov. Phil Bryant has formed a coalition that will develop a collaborative, comprehensive plan to improve Jackson Public Schools.

It centers on community involvement, collaborative governance and strategic investments. It does not initiate a state takeover of JPS, though the Mississippi Department of Education’s request remains active.

Instead, it brings together JPS stakeholders and forms partnerships with national and local experts, including the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Education Commission of the States and Mississippi Economic Council.

“The easy thing for me to do would have been approve the state takeover,” Gov. Bryant said. “This is a better way forward for the 27,000 students in JPS. The opportunity to form this coalition was too good to pass up. I am grateful for the membership’s commitment to bring transformative change to Jackson Public Schools.”

As part of the first phase, every current member of the Jackson Public Schools Board of Trustees has resigned. Also included is the formation of a Project Commission, comprised of JPS stakeholders. From there, commissioners and local, state and national partners will engage the community in a series of listening sessions.

“The Governor and I agree that the challenges faced by the Jackson Public School District provide an opportunity to create a new transformative vision for JPS,” said Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba. “Our children deserve an excellent school district. I am pleased to work together with Governor Bryant and the Kellogg Foundation to create this ‘Third Option’ for JPS. Many would say that the Governor and my political views represent oppositional poles; however, this collaboration is an excellent demonstration of what I have called ‘Operational Unity.’”

Mayor Lumumba continued: “We have come together for the benefit of our children and our community to craft a plan that is not about personality, but about solving real problems to benefit all parties.”

With input from ECS, which will share best practices developed from successes in other states, a request for proposals to perform an outside evaluation of the JPS educational ecosystem will be issued. The Kellogg Foundation has agreed to support the commission’s discovery efforts, including the outside evaluation and listening sessions.

“Children are our greatest asset and we believe in their hopes, dreams and aspirations,” said La June Montgomery Tabron, president and CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. “Their future makes this work so important and when we stand together in partnership with the governor, mayor, JPS and the community, all in alignment, great things will happen.”

The outside evaluation will be informed by school data and the listening sessions. Its findings will drive the development of a plan that addresses key education gaps, alignment of resources, professional development, personnel recommendations, safety considerations and other factors.

The Project Commission will consider the findings and will work with outside organizations to identify existing resources within JPS to apply toward the plan’s implementation. Periodic evaluations will then be conducted to ensure JPS stays on the path to success.


… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About For the MBJ

Leave a Reply