JACKSON –Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves today commended Mississippi teachers and students for their successful efforts to raise academic achievement in the areas of reading and math.

Mississippi is the only state to see significant gains in student performance on fourth grade reading and math on the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

“Mississippi’s students and teachers have worked incredibly hard, and I am thrilled to see their efforts pay off,” Lt. Gov. Reeves said. “By increasing investment in the classroom, often outside the MAEP formula, teachers have received better-quality professional development, children are getting the help they need to improve literacy, and schools are responding to increased accountability for student learning.”

Under Republican leadership, Mississippi spends a record $400 million more on education over the past four years. Part of that increase in funding was spent on teacher professional development programs and efforts to improve literacy among students.

“Mississippi’s fourth graders responded to increased investment in classroom spending – outside the formula – by scoring higher than their peers in 2013,” Lt. Gov. Reeves said. “Proponents of Initiative 42 argue that only the school funding formula will address student performance. These national results prove the Legislature’s efforts to concentrate on programs that produce positive results in the classroom are working. Please to do not let one Hinds County chancery judge undo all of the great progress we have made over the last four years.”