Miss. Dept. of Education eyes expanded outreach

news_education_greenBy Jeff Amy

Associated Press

JACKSON – The Mississippi Department of Education is likely to add 27 contractors to help local schools improve teaching.

The state Board of Education discussed the $2.8 million initiative at its work session Thursday and is likely to vote to approve it Friday.

Observers including a legislative watchdog committee have noted that the state department traditionally has been more of a regulatory organization than one that directly works to improve educational outcomes.

State Superintendent Carey Wright says the effort will expand instructional aid.

Chief Deputy State Superintendent Kim Benton says the effort will focus on literacy, math, language arts and early childhood learning. She says it’s designed in part to help districts make the switch to the Common Core state standards.

The University of Mississippi will administer the budget for the effort.