The “Parents Campaign” questionnaire:
The following questions were provided to candidates for the Mississippi House and Senate, and pertinent statewide offices, by The Parents’ Campaign:
What is your experience with K-12 public schools, personally and/or with your children?
Do you support full funding of the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP)? Yes or No (circle one)
If no, explain why.
On the November ballot, will you vote for Initiative 42? Yes or No (circle one)
Explain your answer.
Do you support or oppose vouchers that send taxpayer dollars to private schools, religious schools, home schools, or virtual schools? Why or why not?
Do you believe that all schools that receive taxpayer dollars, including voucher schools, should be accountable to taxpayers for the quality of education they provide, using the same accountability measures?
Nationally, corporate interests have funded a variety of profit-driven reforms in public schools, achieving mixed results and often leaving schools in worse shape than before the “reforms” were implemented. How should Mississippi legislators and state leaders address the privatization push in our state?
Children need adequate reading supports and services in pre-k, 1st, and 2nd grades, prior to reaching the 3rd grade reading gate. If they fail to meet the minimum score required to pass to 4th grade, the law requires that they be provided intensive remediation in reading. Are you committed to properly funding the literacy programs, services, and remediation that are required by state law to ensure that Mississippi public school students achieve reading success by the end of 3rd grade?
Public schools serve the vast majority of Mississippi students with disabilities. Do you pledge to support full funding of special education services in public schools? (Special education has been underfunded by the state every year since 2008.)
Do you support the continuation, expansion, and adequate funding of high quality early childhood education programs in Mississippi?
Do you support the current Mississippi College- and Career-Readiness Standards? Yes or No (circle one)
If yes, why? If no, which standard(s) would you change?
The nation’s top teachers say that the greatest barriers to school success for K-12 students are family stress, poverty, and learning and psychological problems. What steps do you believe legislators should take to alleviate these obstacles for Mississippi children?
Do you support moving toward competitive salaries and maintaining a strong retirement plan for teachers, and raising pay for teacher assistants?
Legislators have little or no staff to help them understand the many bills they must consider. Before introducing or supporting a bill that could affect public education, will you commit to seeking input from teachers, principals, superintendents, and parents of public school students in your district? Who will be advising you on education policies?
Will you commit to representing the will of your constituents over that of lobbyists and state or party leaders?