Jackson schools get shot to fix problems, but takeover looms
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The state Board of Education is giving Jackson schools a chance to fix accreditation problems, but Mississippi's second-largest school district may have only a short window to avoid a state takeover.
The board voted 4-1 Thursday to approve a corrective action plan submitted by the 27,000-student district after it was placed on probation in August. The board rejected an earlier version of the plan in November, demanding more specifics.
Mississippi Department of Education accrediting chief Paula Vanderford told the board that state employees still find alarming conditions at schools, saying a recent visit to a district high school found unstaffed classrooms, students milling around in halls and students looking at cellphones instead of taking part in classes. She said buses were arriving late and students weren't searched when they set off metal detectors upon entering.