FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 21, 2007
GOVERNOR BARBOUR SIGNS EMERGENCY DECLARATION FOR JEFFERSON DAVIS COUNTY SCHOOLS
(Jackson, Mississippi) - Governor Haley Barbour today declared a state of emergency exists in the Jefferson Davis County School District, authorizing the state Department of Education to take immediate corrective action.
"After reviewing documentation provided by the state Department of Education, I am convinced that existing conditions in the Jefferson Davis County School District jeopardize the educational interests of the children enrolled there. My declaration of an emergency will give the department the authority to take immediate steps, including appointing a conservator, so the district can begin to recover from serious leadership and management deficiencies,” Governor Barbour said.
The Governor's proclamation is in response to a resolution adopted by the Mississippi Board of Education at its May 18, 2007 meeting, requesting a State of Emergency be declared pursuant to Section 37-17-6(11)(b) of the Mississippi Code of 1972, as amended.
The Mississippi Board of Education found that there is sufficient cause to believe that an extreme emergency situation exists in the Jefferson Davis County School District brought on by serious leadership and management concerns existing in the District and by serious violations of accreditation standards, Board policy, and state law, which puts the school children in an unstable environment, denying the students the opportunity to learn, excel and obtain a free and appropriate public education.