By Chris Kieffer Daily Journal STARKVILLE – Georgia Graham walked through a room of 4-year-olds last spring clutching a large, yellowish-brown ball. What, she asked her students at Aiken Village Preschool, did they think it was. The guesses came quickly from the children, who were otherwise occupied by various activities. One thought it was a […]

By Chris Kieffer Daily Journal Mississippi’s efforts to improve its schools are beginning too late, some say. The best place for the state to spark its embattled education system may be in the space before its children even start school. Citing research that people’s brains grow most rapidly during the first three to five years […]

The Abecedarian Project Four cohorts of individuals, born into low-income families between 1972 and 1977, were randomly assigned as infants to either the early educational intervention group or a control group. Their progress was observed over time by researchers from the University of North Carolina with follow-up studies at ages 12, 15 and 21. It […]

By Bobby Harrison Daily Journal Jackson Bureau JACKSON – Former Speaker Billy McCoy, D-Rienzi, used to muse that during his lengthy legislative career as a committee chair the only bill he lost before the full House was a proposal to allow local school districts to provide pre-kindergarten classes. The bill was defeated in the early […]


Daily Journal Each state takes a unique approach to pre-K. Here is a look at what a few other states offer in state-funded pre-school programs. MISSISSIPPI In 2013, the Legislature approved state funding on pre-K programs for the first time. The state currently spends $6 million annually, or $3 million each on two different programs […]

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Senate Education Chair Gray Tollison, center, of Oxford, and House Education Chair John Moore, right, of Brandon, both say the Legislature likely will prepare a ballot alternative to a school funding initiative that recently collected more than 200,000 signatures statewide. They and Sen. Russell Jolly, left, of Houston, were among legislators appearing on an education panel last month at the Lee County Library.

By Bobby Harrison Daily Journal Jackson Bureau JACKSON – Mississippi voters may be faced with two proposed constitutional provisions in November 2015 dealing with the funding of public education. Two key legislators have indicated it is likely there will be an effort to place on the November 2015 ballot an alternative to the school funding […]

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Susan Kenney points to pre-kindergarten student Narriah Collins as they sing a song during a presentation about music education Friday afternoon at the Early Childhood Education Center.

By Riley Manning Daily Journal TUPELO – It may seem like pure fun, but when a child sings “Itsy Bitsy Spider,” a storm cloud of activity is sparking off inside his or her brain. Elementary music and education professor Susan Kenney, who retired from Brigham Young University last month, spoke to educators at the Early […]

Daily Journal The spotlight is growing brighter on early-childhood education in Mississippi. A growing consensus of education experts contend that since most of a child’s brain development occurs in the first five years of life, the best way to boost Mississippi’s historically underperforming school system is to ensure more children are prepared from the start. […]


By Jeff Amy Associated Press JACKSON – Cuts to sports and activities at schools districts that lose state accreditation would be delayed under a plan approved Wednesday by the Mississippi Board of Education. The proposed change received no remarks during a public comment period. But board members Johnny Franklin of Bolton and Danny Spreitler of […]