When the Mississippi legislature voted to consolidate Starkville City Schools and Oktibbeha County Schools into one district, parents and students on both sides were apprehensive. After all, there were such differences between the districts – size, demographics, athletics, but more important, under the state accountability system, Oktibbeha County was deemed a failing district, while Starkville was a successful one.
Knowing that parents were poised to pull their students from the public schools, PPS of Starkville went to work. Collaborating with other stakeholders and organizations, the chapter advocated for the formation of a community-centered, non-political body to develop a plan for implementing the consolidation – the Commission on Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School Structure–and getting buy-in from all communities affected.
The outcome? The consolidation was completed successfully. Rather than a wholesale flight of families from the public schools, there was an increase in students choosing the public high school over private ones.
This is just one example of the parent voice making a difference in public education. Parents for Public Schools brings the parent voice to public education, making sure that public education remains the right choice.