Jackson County NAACP fears state takeover for Moss Point Schools

Jackson County NAACP fears state takeover for Moss Point Schools

The President of Jackson County's NAACP chapter is worried about the quality of education and the leadership within the Moss Point School District.

"We just want to make sure the administration is aware of our concerns, and to allow them the opportunity to address those concerns," said Curley Clark, the NAACP chapter president.

Clark fears the school district will not show any improvement when the latest district report card comes out on Oct. 19.

"If the new grades don't show improvement, then we want to have discussions with the superintendent," Clark said.

Moss Point Schools Superintendent Dr. Shannon Vincent firmly believes a state takeover will not happen. She is confident that the upcoming test results will reflect the progress being made in classrooms throughout the district.

"We're making strides across the board. We still have a long way to go, but we can see tremendous growth and we're looking forward to the October 19 date when those test scores and letter designations are going to come out," said Vincent.

Moss Point schools have received a 'D' grade since 2012, and in 2011 the district was rated as "low performing."

"It is very concerning to us and we want to provide the administration an opportunity to share with us what's being done to improve those grades and solicit help from the community for help to improve that grade," Clark said.

Clark doesn't want to see the state takeover Moss Point Schools, as it has recently done in Jackson. However, Vincent says the improvement process is typically slow, and that scores are getting better after each assessment.

"Can a district go from a 'D' to a 'C' in two years? That's almost impossible. However, as long as we're showing growth in the right direction, I think we're doing what we can to move the district to a 'C,'" added Vincent.

Transparency and accountability were also on the list of criticisms leveled against officials in the school district. Vincent says transparency and community outreach has been a priority since assuming her role in 2015.

"It's always my wish to provide people with information about where we are in the district, where we were, and what we're doing to move forward. We've done that with over 27 different organizations," said Vincent.

A community meeting between the Jackson County NAACP and the Superintendent is scheduled for Saturday at 7 p.m. at First Missionary Baptist Church in Moss Point; 4600 Main St. The public is invited to attend.

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