Chapter 1. State Board of Education

§ 37-1-1. Establishment; composition; qualifications, appointment, terms of office and compensation of members; meetings; officers.

From and after July 1, 1984, there shall be a state board of education which shall manage and invest school funds according to law, formulate policies according to law for implementation by the State Department of Education and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by law. The board shall consist of nine (9) members of whom none shall be an elected official. The Governor shall appoint one (1) member who shall be a resident of the Third Supreme Court District and who shall serve an initial term of one (1) year, one (1) member who shall be a resident of the First Supreme Court District and who shall serve an initial term of five (5) years, one (1) member who shall be a resident of the Second Supreme Court District and who shall serve an initial term of nine (9) years, one (1) member who shall be employed on an active and full-time basis as a school administrator and who shall serve an initial term of three (3) years, and one (1) member who shall be employed on an active and full-time basis as a schoolteacher and who shall serve an initial term of seven (7) years. The Lieutenant Governor shall appoint two (2) members from the state at large, one (1) of whom shall serve an initial term of four (4) years and one (1) of whom shall serve an initial term of eight (8) years. The Speaker of the House of Representatives shall appoint two (2) members from the state at large, one (1) of whom shall serve an initial term of two (2) years and one (1) of whom shall serve an initial term of six (6) years. The initial terms of appointees shall begin on July 1, 1984, and all subsequent appointments shall begin on the first day of July for a term of nine (9) years and continue until their successors are appointed and qualify; however, to ensure an orderly process of transition, the initial appointments shall be made not later than March 1, 1984. An appointment to fill a vacancy which arises for reasons other than by expiration of a term of office shall be for the unexpired term only. All members shall be appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate, and no member shall be actively engaged in the educational profession except as stated above.

The first official meeting of the original board members shall be called by the Governor as soon after July 1, 1984, as practical. The board shall elect a chairman from its membership at the first meeting of the original board members and every year thereafter. A majority of the membership of the board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business. The board shall meet regularly once a month at such time as shall be designated by an order entered upon the minutes thereof. Special meetings of the board shall be held upon call of the chairman or upon the call of a majority of the members thereof. The State Superintendent of Public Education shall be the secretary of the board. The board shall hold its sessions at the seat of government, or at such location in the State of Mississippi as shall be designated by an order entered upon the minutes thereof.

Members of the board shall be reimbursed for expenses in the manner and amount specified in Section 25-3-41 and shall be entitled to receive per diem compensation as authorized in Section 25-3-69.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6548; 1942, § 6233; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 3; Laws, 1986, ch. 432, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1986.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982), provides as follows:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be referred to as the ’Mississippi Education Reform Act of 1982.’”

Laws of 1984, 1st Ex Sess, ch. 10, § 8, eff from and after July 1, 1984, provides as follows:

“SECTION 8. The legislature hereby reaffirms its commitment to fully and timely fund the provisions of the Mississippi Education Reform Act of 1982, cited as Chapter 17, Laws of the Extraordinary Session of 1982.”

Laws of 2011, ch. 511, § 2, effective April 26, 2011, provides:

“SECTION 2. (1) The State Board of Education, in conjunction with the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning and the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, shall study and develop a comprehensive report and recommendations to the 2012 Legislature, by January 2, 2012, on the implementation, expansion and costs associated with the establishment of an Adult High School Diploma. The Chairmen of the House and Senate Education Committees, or their respective designees, and a representative appointed by the Governor, shall serve on the study panel for the development of an Adult High School Diploma.

“(2) The gubernatorial appointment to the study panel shall be made within thirty (30) days after the effective date of this act.

“(3) Legislative members of the study panel shall serve without compensation for their services, but may be reimbursed for necessary expense in attending to the actual business of the study panel from any available funds, as provided by law. Legislative members shall be reimbursed from the contingent expense fund of their respective house, but only with the specific approval of the Rules Committee of the respective house; however, no expense for attending meetings of the study panel may be paid while the Legislature is in session.”

Cross References —

Supreme Court districts defined, see §9-3-1.

Creation and composition of the state department of education, see §37-3-1.

State superintendent of public education and his duties generally, see §§ 37-3-9, 37-3-11.

Approval of selection for deputy superintendents, associate superintendents and directors and compensation thereof, see §37-3-13.

Establishment of county boards of education generally, see §37-5-1.

Powers and duties of state board of education regarding the Gifted Education Act, see §§37-23-177,37-23-179.

Designation of state board of education as governing body of Mississippi School for Math and Science, and the duties of the board with respect thereto, see §37-139-1 et seq.

Preparation of energy management plans, see §57-39-101 et seq.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 176-186.

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-1-2. Legislative findings and determinations; state policy.

The legislature finds and determines that the quality of public education and its effect upon the social, cultural and economic enhancement of the people of Mississippi is a matter of public policy, the object of which is the education and performance of its children and youth. The legislature hereby declares the following to be the policy of the State of Mississippi:

That the students, parents, general citizenry, local schoolteachers and administrators, local governments, local school boards, and state government have a joint and shared responsibility for the quality of education delivered through the public education system in the State of Mississippi;

To produce a functionally literate school population;

To ensure that all students master the most essential parts of a basic education;

To establish, raise and maintain educational standards;

To improve the quality of education by strengthening it and elevating its goals;

To provide quality education for all school-age children in the state;

That excellence and high achievement of all students should be the ultimate goal;

To encourage the common efforts of students, parents, teachers, administrators and business and professional leaders for the establishment of specific goals for performance;

To improve instructional and administrative quality, to relate the education community to other policymakers, to achieve increased competency among students, teachers and administrators, to provide for continuing professional development for teachers, counselors and administrators, to assure that the budget process, the planning function and the allocation of personnel of the state department of education are commensurate with its educational goals;

That the return on public education which is the single largest investment for the state be the effectiveness of the delivery system and the product it is designed to produce;

That the investment in public education can be justified on the basis of the economic benefits that will accrue both to the individual and to society, recognizing that the return on such investment is long term and dramatic progress is not immediate;

That emphasis must be placed upon early mastery of the skills necessary to success in school and that quality, performance-based early childhood education programs are an essential element of a comprehensive education system;

That local school districts and their public schools be required to account for the product of their efforts;

That the children of this state receive a period of instruction sufficient to train each in the basic educational skills adequate for the student to take his or her place in society and make a contribution as a citizen of this state, and that all children be encouraged to continue their education until they have completed high school;

To establish an accreditation system based upon measurable elements in school known to be related to instructional effectiveness, to establish a credible process for measuring and rating schools, to establish a method for monitoring continued performance, and to provide for a state response when performance is inadequate;

That the teachers of this state, to the extent possible, receive salaries that are at least equal to the average of the salaries received by teachers in the southeastern United States.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1984, 1st Ex Sess, ch 10, § 8 eff from and after July 1, 1984, provides as follows:

“SECTION 8. The legislature hereby reaffirms its commitment to fully and timely fund the provisions of the Mississippi Education Reform Act of 1982, cited as Chapter 17, Laws of the Extraordinary Session of 1982.”

Cross References —

Power of state board of education to implement policies under this section, see §37-1-3.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Intent of state legislature, expressed in §37-1-2(p), that teachers of state, to extent possible, receive salaries received by teachers in southeastern United States, does not and cannot be interpreted as creating property interest vesting in Mississippi teachers, falling under protection of Fourteenth Amendment’s due process clause; accordingly, federal civil rights action brought by teachers to require state officials to implement salary increase is barred by sovereign immunity. Mohler v. Mississippi, 782 F.2d 1291, 1986 U.S. App. LEXIS 22325 (5th Cir. Miss. 1986).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school board may employ legal counsel other than the Board Attorney only by a majority vote of a quorum present in a properly noticed and open meeting of the board, and must officially hire an attorney before sharing any confidential personnel records. Reasons for non-renewal of a superintendent’s contract and any settlement offers must be approved and recorded in the minutes at an official meeting of the board. All policies, actions, and decisions of the school board must be reasonable and necessary to meet the educational needs of the district’s children. Foreman, March 30, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00119, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 71.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Law Reviews.

Development of Educational Policy in Mississippi. 58 Miss. L. J. 223, Fall, 1988.

§ 37-1-3. Adoption of rules and regulations; budget; central management; educational improvement program; curriculum and course of study; objectives for instruction in personal money management skills; authority to expend available federal funds for training expenses and salary incentives for licensed teachers.

  1. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules and regulations and set standards and policies for the organization, operation, management, planning, budgeting and programs of the State Department of Education.
    1. The board is directed to identify all functions of the department that contribute to or comprise a part of the state system of educational accountability and to establish and maintain within the department the necessary organizational structure, policies and procedures for effectively coordinating such functions. Such policies and procedures shall clearly fix and delineate responsibilities for various aspects of the system and for overall coordination of the total system and its effective management.
    2. The board shall establish and maintain a system-wide plan of performance, policy and directions of public education not otherwise provided for.
    3. The board shall effectively use the personnel and resources of the department to enhance technical assistance to school districts in instruction and management therein.
    4. The board shall establish and maintain a central budget policy.
    5. The board shall establish and maintain within the State Department of Education a central management capacity under the direction of the State Superintendent of Public Education.
    6. The board, with recommendations from the superintendent, shall design and maintain a five-year plan and program for educational improvement that shall set forth objectives for system performance and development and be the basis for budget requests and legislative initiatives.
    1. The State Board of Education shall adopt and maintain a curriculum and a course of study to be used in the public school districts that is designed to prepare the state’s children and youth to be productive, informed, creative citizens, workers and leaders, and it shall regulate all matters arising in the practical administration of the school system not otherwise provided for.
    2. Before the 1999-2000 school year, the State Board of Education shall develop personal living and finances objectives that focus on money management skills for individuals and families for appropriate, existing courses at the secondary level. The objectives must require the teaching of those skills necessary to handle personal business and finances and must include instruction in the following:
      1. Opening a bank account and assessing the quality of a bank’s services;
      2. Balancing a checkbook;
      3. Managing debt, including retail and credit card debt;
      4. Completing a loan application;
      5. The implications of an inheritance;
      6. The basics of personal insurance policies;
      7. Consumer rights and responsibilities;
      8. Dealing with salesmen and merchants;
      9. Computing state and federal income taxes;
      10. Local tax assessments;
      11. Computing interest rates by various mechanisms;
      12. Understanding simple contracts; and
      13. Contesting an incorrect billing statement.
  2. The State Board of Education shall have authority to expend any available federal funds, or any other funds expressly designated, to pay training, educational expenses, salary incentives and salary supplements to licensed teachers employed in local school districts or schools administered by the State Board of Education. Such incentive payments shall not be considered part of a school district’s local supplement as defined in Section 37-151-5(o), nor shall the incentives be considered part of the local supplement paid to an individual teacher for the purposes of Section 37-19-7(1). MAEP funds or any other state funds shall not be used to provide such incentives unless specifically authorized by law.
  3. The State Board of Education shall through its actions seek to implement the policies set forth in Section 37-1-2.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6553; 1942, § 6238; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 5; Laws, 1999, ch. 360, § 1; Laws, 2005, ch. 356, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 36, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Amendment Notes —

The 1999 amendment substituted “State Superintendent of Public Education” for “State Superintendent of Education” in (1)(e); made punctuation changes in (1)(f); and added (2)(b).

The 2005 amendment inserted (3); and renumbered former (3) as present (4).

The 2013 amendment substituted “public school districts” for “public schools” in (2)(a).

Cross References —

Paperwork reduction and preservation of classroom instructional time, see §37-1-11.

Issuance of regulations relating to the use of relocatable classrooms, see §37-1-13.

Duty of the state department of education to execute laws relating to administrative, supervisory, and consultative services to state public schools, see §37-3-5.

State Superintendent of public education and his duties generally, see §§37-3-9,37-3-11.

Mississippi Uniform School Laws, see §37-6-1 et seq.

Maintenance of uniform system of free public schools, see §37-13-1.

Appointment of curriculum committee by the state board of education, see §37-13-9.

Duty of the state department of education relative to program of education for exceptional children, see §37-23-5.

Duty of the state board of education to promulgate rules and regulations relative to transportation of school children, see §37-41-1.

Assumption of authority and duties of State Textbook Procurement Commission by State Board of Education, see §37-43-2.

Designation of state board of education as governing body of Mississippi School for Math and Science, and the duties of the board with respect thereto, see §37-139-1 et seq.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 84.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 188, 191–203.

Law Reviews.

“Train Up a Child in the Way He Should Go”: State regulation of Private Religious Education. 9 Miss. C. L. Rev. 101 (1989).

§ 37-1-4. Transition.

In order to provide for an orderly transition following its appointment, the state board of education as it will exist on and after July 1, 1984, shall meet with and receive the cooperation of the state superintendent of public education and the state department of education on any matters relating to the public school education system in the state until assuming its duties and authority on July 1, 1984. During this transition period, said state board of education shall formulate and adopt rules and regulations in accordance with Section 25-43-1.101 et seq., and formulate standards and priorities necessary for the orderly administration of the public education system of the state. Such rules, regulations, standards and priorities shall become effective on July 1, 1984. The board shall also require data and information on program performance from any source relating to the public school system. The state department of education shall assist the board in assuming its duties and shall provide any technical assistance as may be required. The state department of education, from any funds appropriated thereto, shall, upon the request of the board, timely pay, with the approval of the commission of budget and accounting, all sums reasonably required for the operation of the board, including per diem and actual expenses of the board, and the implementation of Chapter 17, Laws of the First Extraordinary Session of 1982, through June 30, 1984.

Joint Legislative Committee Note.--

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in this section by substituting “Section 25-43-1.101 et seq.” for “Section 25-43-1 et seq.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 12, 2019, meeting.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 4, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982).

§ 37-1-5. Decision of appeals from county superintendents and state superintendent.

  1. The State Board of Education shall decide all appeals from the decisions of the county superintendents or from the decisions of the state superintendent, as authorized by statute. All matters relating to appeals shall be presented in writing, and the decision of the board shall be final.
  2. The State Board of Education shall adopt procedures for conducting any such appeals as are authorized by statute. Such procedures shall include notification of the time and place of any hearing requested by the appealing party. Any such hearing shall be conducted by a hearing officer designated by the State Board of Education. At such hearing, the hearing officer and any person affected by the appeal may conduct reasonable questioning of persons who make relevant factual allegations concerning the appeal. The hearing officer shall require that all persons be sworn before they may offer any testimony at the hearing, and the hearing officer is authorized to administer oaths. Any person so choosing may be represented by counsel at the hearing. A record of the hearing shall be made, which shall consist of a transcript of all testimony received, all documents and other material introduced by any interested person, and such other material as the hearing officer considers relevant, including his own recommendation, which he shall make within a reasonable period of time after the hearing is closed and after he has had an opportunity to review, study and analyze the evidence presented during the hearing. The completed record shall be certified to the State Board of Education, which shall consider only the record in making its decision, and shall not consider any evidence or material which is not included therein. The State Board of Education shall make its written findings and issue its order after reviewing said record.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6549; 1942, § 6234; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1992, ch. 524, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 206–214, 219–227.

§ 37-1-7. Grounds and procedure for removal of county superintendent.

For continued neglect of duty, drunkenness, incompetency or official misconduct, the state board of education may remove a county superintendent. However, before the removal, the officer shall have ten (10) days’ notice of the charge, and shall be allowed opportunity to make defense.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6550; 1942, § 6235; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278.

Cross References —

County Superintendents generally, see §37-5-61 et seq.

Filling of vacancy in office of County Superintendent, see §37-5-75.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 76.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 215, 216, 237–250, 774, et seq.

§ 37-1-9. Administration of oaths of Mississippi Board of Education; examination of witnesses by board; investigative reports exempt from provisions of Mississippi Public Records Act.

    1. The Mississippi Board of Education, acting by and through its chairman or executive secretary, is authorized to administer oaths, to take or cause depositions to be taken, to subpoena persons and to issue a subpoena to compel production of books, papers, records and other documents. The board shall have the powers of a court to compel witnesses to attend and testify in all matters of investigation by the board.
    2. For noncompliance with a subpoena, the board may apply to the circuit court for an order requiring the person subpoenaed to appear before the board and to testify and produce books, papers, records and documents if so ordered. Failure to obey the order of the court may be punished as contempt.
    1. In addition to the exemptions from public access provided in Section 37-11-51, investigative reports shall be exempt from the provisions of the Mississippi Public Records Act of 1983, but the board may choose to make public all or any part of an investigative report.
    2. For the purposes of this subsection (2), “investigative report” includes documentation on which it is based and means records that are compiled by the board, the Department of Education, the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development, or the Accreditation Commission in the process of investigating alleged misconduct that could result in disciplinary action, the disclosure of which would impede, harm or jeopardize the investigation, or that would: (i) reveal the identity of informants or witnesses; (ii) deprive a person of a right to a fair trial or an impartial adjudication; or (iii) endanger the life or safety of a public official or employee or confidential informants or witnesses.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6550; 1942, § 6235; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 2015, ch. 470, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 22, 2015).

Amendment Notes —

The 2015 amendment rewrote the section, which read: “The members of the state board of education are authorized to administer oaths and to take or cause depositions to be taken. Said members shall have the powers of a court to compel witnesses to attend and testify in all matters of investigation by the board.”

§ 37-1-11. Duties of State Department of Education and local boards as to preservation of classroom instructional time and paperwork reduction.

  1. The school day shall be preserved for the purpose of teaching. It is the intent of the Legislature that every effort be made by the State Department of Education and the local school boards to protect the instructional time in the classroom and to reduce the amount of paperwork which must be completed by teachers.
  2. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules that provide for simplifying and reducing the number and length of written reports and other written documents that the State Department of Education requires from school districts and school district employees. The board shall conduct a comprehensive review of its rules to simplify and to reduce the number and length of reports required from school districts and school district employees. The State Department of Education shall provide nonmandatory models to school districts of lesson plans, curriculum guides and other required reports that comply with department reporting requirements.
  3. The State Board of Education and the school board of each school district shall adopt policies to limit and reduce the number and length of written reports that classroom teachers are required to prepare.

HISTORY: Laws, 1987, ch. 375; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 7, eff from and after July 1, 2011.

Amendment Notes —

The 2011 amendment deleted former (3) which read: “As part of its annual report to the Legislature, the State Board of Education shall include a statement of the total number and length of reports that it requires school districts and school district employees to prepare and of its efforts to reduce overall reporting requirements. The board shall identify for the Legislature those reports required by federal law or rule, those reports specifically required by state law and those reports required by department rule.”

Cross References —

Administration of programs of state department of education, see §37-1-3.

State Department of Education generally, see §37-3-1 et seq.

§ 37-1-12. Development and promulgation of regulations for annual reports from school districts and State Department of Education to Legislature.

The State Board of Education shall develop and promulgate regulations for annual reports from school districts and from the State Department of Education to the Legislature. Such regulations shall eliminate duplication, make effective use of technology and enable the Legislature to monitor education in Mississippi. These regulations may include methods to reduce redundant reporting requirements and eliminate inadequate performance measures, and the State Board of Education may include any proposed legislative amendments to state law necessary to improve statewide reporting mandates.

HISTORY: Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 37, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment substituted “school districts” for “schools” in the first sentence.

§ 37-1-13. Purchase and use of relocatable classrooms.

  1. The State Board of Education shall issue regulations:
    1. Setting minimum specifications for relocatable classrooms for the public school districts;
    2. Approving or disapproving plans for relocatable classrooms for public school districts;
    3. Providing a system of requiring local school districts to receive State Department of Education approval before purchase of such relocatable classrooms.
  2. The State Department of Education may, in its discretion, inspect the facilities of any manufacturer of relocatable classrooms for the purpose of determining if State Department of Education minimum specifications are being met.
  3. The State Department of Education shall insure that local school districts advertise for and receive bids as required by state law for purchase of relocatable classrooms. The State Department of Education shall approve plans for relocatable classrooms by persons, firms, corporations or associations permitted to submit bids for consideration, before such bids are submitted to local school districts. The State Department of Education shall have the right to reject any and all relocatable classroom plans submitted. Bids may not be submitted to local school districts, unless persons, firms, corporations or associations have State Department of Education approval.

HISTORY: Laws, 1990, ch. 535, § 3; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 38, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment substituted “the public school districts” for “public schools” in (1)(a); and substituted “school districts” for “schools” at the end of (1)(b).

Cross References —

State Department of Education generally, see §37-3-1 et seq.

Purchase of relocatable classrooms by local school boards, see §37-7-301.

Sale or lease of relocatable classrooms by one school district to another, see §37-7-471.

Chapter 3. State Department of Education

§ 37-3-1. Organization of state department of education.

  1. Until July 1, 1983, there shall be a state department of education, which shall consist of a state superintendent of public education, an assistant state superintendent of public education, a director of the division of finance and administration, a director of the division of instruction, a director of the division of school building and transportation services, a director of vocational education, a director of the division of vocational rehabilitation, a director of the division of junior colleges, and such supervisors, assistants or employees as may be necessary for the proper functioning of the above-named divisions.
  2. From and after July 1, 1983, and until July 1, 1984, there shall be a state department of education, which shall consist of a state superintendent of public education, a director of the division of finance and administration, a director of the division of instruction, a director of the division of school building and transportation services, a director of the division of vocational and technical education, who shall be an associate state superintendent of public education, the director of the division of vocational rehabilitation, a director of the division of junior colleges and such supervisors, assistants or employees as may be necessary for the proper functioning of the above-named divisions.
  3. From and after July 1, 1984, there shall be a state department of education which shall be under the direction and supervision of the state superintendent of public education. The state department of education shall be organized into functional divisions as established by the state board of education, including any divisions established by law and prescribing the duties of the directors of such divisions.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-01; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 1; Laws, 1982, ch. 493, § 8; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 6, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1990, ch. 424, § 1, effective June 30, 1990, amended Laws, 1982, ch. 493, § 23, so as to remove a provision providing for the repeal of Laws of 1982, ch. 493 effective June 30, 1990.

Cross References —

Composition of the state board of education, see §37-1-1.

State Department of Education authorized to establish office of career education, see §37-13-58.

Office of Compulsory Student Attendance Enforcement, see §37-13-81 et seq.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 176-186.

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-3-2. Certification of teachers and administrators.

  1. There is established within the State Department of Education the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development. It shall be the purpose and duty of the commission to make recommendations to the State Board of Education regarding standards for the certification and licensure and continuing professional development of those who teach or perform tasks of an educational nature in the public schools of Mississippi.
    1. The commission shall be composed of fifteen (15) qualified members. The membership of the commission shall be composed of the following members to be appointed, three (3) from each of the four (4) congressional districts, as such districts existed on January 1, 2011, in accordance with the population calculations determined by the 2010 federal decennial census, including: four (4) classroom teachers; three (3) school administrators; one (1) representative of schools of education of public institutions of higher learning located within the state to be recommended by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning; one (1) representative from the schools of education of independent institutions of higher learning to be recommended by the Board of the Mississippi Association of Independent Colleges; one (1) representative from public community and junior colleges located within the state to be recommended by the Mississippi Community College Board; one (1) local school board member; and four (4) laypersons. Three (3) members of the commission, at the sole discretion of the State Board of Education, shall be appointed from the state at large.
    2. All appointments shall be made by the State Board of Education after consultation with the State Superintendent of Public Education. The first appointments by the State Board of Education shall be made as follows: five (5) members shall be appointed for a term of one (1) year; five (5) members shall be appointed for a term of two (2) years; and five (5) members shall be appointed for a term of three (3) years. Thereafter, all members shall be appointed for a term of four (4) years.
  2. The State Board of Education when making appointments shall designate a chairman. The commission shall meet at least once every two (2) months or more often if needed. Members of the commission shall be compensated at a rate of per diem as authorized by Section 25-3-69 and be reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses as authorized by Section 25-3-41.
    1. An appropriate staff member of the State Department of Education shall be designated and assigned by the State Superintendent of Public Education to serve as executive secretary and coordinator for the commission. No less than two (2) other appropriate staff members of the State Department of Education shall be designated and assigned by the State Superintendent of Public Education to serve on the staff of the commission.
    2. An Office of Educator Misconduct Evaluations shall be established within the State Department of Education to assist the commission in responding to infractions and violations, and in conducting hearings and enforcing the provisions of subsections (11), (12), (13), (14) and (15) of this section, and violations of the Mississippi Educator Code of Ethics.
  3. It shall be the duty of the commission to:
    1. Set standards and criteria, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education, for all educator preparation programs in the state;
    2. Recommend to the State Board of Education each year approval or disapproval of each educator preparation program in the state, subject to a process and schedule determined by the State Board of Education;
    3. Establish, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education, standards for initial teacher certification and licensure in all fields;
    4. Establish, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education, standards for the renewal of teacher licenses in all fields;
    5. Review and evaluate objective measures of teacher performance, such as test scores, which may form part of the licensure process, and to make recommendations for their use;
    6. Review all existing requirements for certification and licensure;
    7. Consult with groups whose work may be affected by the commission’s decisions;
    8. Prepare reports from time to time on current practices and issues in the general area of teacher education and certification and licensure;
    9. Hold hearings concerning standards for teachers’ and administrators’ education and certification and licensure with approval of the State Board of Education;
    10. Hire expert consultants with approval of the State Board of Education;
    11. Set up ad hoc committees to advise on specific areas; and
    12. Perform such other functions as may fall within their general charge and which may be delegated to them by the State Board of Education.
    1. Standard License — Approved Program Route.An educator entering the school system of Mississippi for the first time and meeting all requirements as established by the State Board of Education shall be granted a standard five-year license. Persons who possess two (2) years of classroom experience as an assistant teacher or who have taught for one (1) year in an accredited public or private school shall be allowed to fulfill student teaching requirements under the supervision of a qualified participating teacher approved by an accredited college of education. The local school district in which the assistant teacher is employed shall compensate such assistant teachers at the required salary level during the period of time such individual is completing student teaching requirements. Applicants for a standard license shall submit to the department:
      1. An application on a department form;
      2. An official transcript of completion of a teacher education program approved by the department or a nationally accredited program, subject to the following: Licensure to teach in Mississippi prekindergarten through kindergarten classrooms shall require completion of a teacher education program or a Bachelor of Science degree with child development emphasis from a program accredited by the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS) or by the National Association for Education of Young Children (NAEYC) or by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Licensure to teach in Mississippi kindergarten, for those applicants who have completed a teacher education program, and in Grade 1 through Grade 4 shall require the completion of an interdisciplinary program of studies. Licenses for Grades 4 through 8 shall require the completion of an interdisciplinary program of studies with two (2) or more areas of concentration. Licensure to teach in Mississippi Grades 7 through 12 shall require a major in an academic field other than education, or a combination of disciplines other than education. Students preparing to teach a subject shall complete a major in the respective subject discipline. All applicants for standard licensure shall demonstrate that such person’s college preparation in those fields was in accordance with the standards set forth by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) or the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) or, for those applicants who have a Bachelor of Science degree with child development emphasis, the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS). Effective July 1, 2016, for initial elementary education licensure, a teacher candidate must earn a passing score on a rigorous test of scientifically research-based reading instruction and intervention and data-based decision-making principles as approved by the State Board of Education;
      3. A copy of test scores evidencing satisfactory completion of nationally administered examinations of achievement, such as the Educational Testing Service’s teacher testing examinations;
      4. Any other document required by the State Board of Education; and
      5. From and after September 30, 2015, no teacher candidate shall be licensed to teach in Mississippi who did not meet the following criteria for entrance into an approved teacher education program:

      1. Twenty-one (21) ACT equivalent or achieve the nationally recommended passing score on the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators examination; and

      2. No less than 2.75 GPA on pre-major coursework of the institution’s approved teacher education program provided that the accepted cohort of candidates meets or exceeds a 3.0 GPA on pre-major coursework.

    2. Standard License — Nontraditional Teaching Route.From and after September 30, 2015, no teacher candidate shall be licensed to teach in Mississippi under the alternate route who did not meet the following criteria:

      Beginning January 1, 2004, an individual who has a passing score on the Praxis I Basic Skills and Praxis II Specialty Area Test in the requested area of endorsement may apply for the Teach Mississippi Institute (TMI) program to teach students in Grades 7 through 12 if the individual meets the requirements of this paragraph (b). The State Board of Education shall adopt rules requiring that teacher preparation institutions which provide the Teach Mississippi Institute (TMI) program for the preparation of nontraditional teachers shall meet the standards and comply with the provisions of this paragraph.

      1. Twenty-one (21) ACT equivalent or achieve the nationally recommended passing score on the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators examination; and
      2. No less than 2.75 GPA on content coursework in the requested area of certification or passing Praxis II scores at or above the national recommended score provided that the accepted cohort of candidates of the institution’s teacher education program meets or exceeds a 3.0 GPA on pre-major coursework.
      3. The Teach Mississippi Institute (TMI) shall include an intensive eight-week, nine-semester-hour summer program or a curriculum of study in which the student matriculates in the fall or spring semester, which shall include, but not be limited to, instruction in education, effective teaching strategies, classroom management, state curriculum requirements, planning and instruction, instructional methods and pedagogy, using test results to improve instruction, and a one (1) semester three-hour supervised internship to be completed while the teacher is employed as a full-time teacher intern in a local school district. The TMI shall be implemented on a pilot program basis, with courses to be offered at up to four (4) locations in the state, with one (1) TMI site to be located in each of the three (3) Mississippi Supreme Court districts.
      4. The school sponsoring the teacher intern shall enter into a written agreement with the institution providing the Teach Mississippi Institute (TMI) program, under terms and conditions as agreed upon by the contracting parties, providing that the school district shall provide teacher interns seeking a nontraditional provisional teaching license with a one-year classroom teaching experience. The teacher intern shall successfully complete the one (1) semester three-hour intensive internship in the school district during the semester immediately following successful completion of the TMI and prior to the end of the one-year classroom teaching experience.
      5. Upon completion of the nine-semester-hour TMI or the fall or spring semester option, the individual shall submit his transcript to the commission for provisional licensure of the intern teacher, and the intern teacher shall be issued a provisional teaching license by the commission, which will allow the individual to legally serve as a teacher while the person completes a nontraditional teacher preparation internship program.
      6. During the semester of internship in the school district, the teacher preparation institution shall monitor the performance of the intern teacher. The school district that employs the provisional teacher shall supervise the provisional teacher during the teacher’s intern year of employment under a nontraditional provisional license, and shall, in consultation with the teacher intern’s mentor at the school district of employment, submit to the commission a comprehensive evaluation of the teacher’s performance sixty (60) days prior to the expiration of the nontraditional provisional license. If the comprehensive evaluation establishes that the provisional teacher intern’s performance fails to meet the standards of the approved nontraditional teacher preparation internship program, the individual shall not be approved for a standard license.
      7. An individual issued a provisional teaching license under this nontraditional route shall successfully complete, at a minimum, a one-year beginning teacher mentoring and induction program administered by the employing school district with the assistance of the State Department of Education.
      8. Upon successful completion of the TMI and the internship provisional license period, applicants for a Standard License – Nontraditional Route shall submit to the commission a transcript of successful completion of the twelve (12) semester hours required in the internship program, and the employing school district shall submit to the commission a recommendation for standard licensure of the intern. If the school district recommends licensure, the applicant shall be issued a Standard License – Nontraditional Route which shall be valid for a five-year period and be renewable.
      9. At the discretion of the teacher preparation institution, the individual shall be allowed to credit the twelve (12) semester hours earned in the nontraditional teacher internship program toward the graduate hours required for a Master of Arts in Teacher (MAT) Degree.
      10. The local school district in which the nontraditional teacher intern or provisional licensee is employed shall compensate such teacher interns at Step 1 of the required salary level during the period of time such individual is completing teacher internship requirements and shall compensate such Standard License – Nontraditional Route teachers at Step 3 of the required salary level when they complete license requirements.

      Implementation of the TMI program provided for under this paragraph (b) shall be contingent upon the availability of funds appropriated specifically for such purpose by the Legislature. Such implementation of the TMI program may not be deemed to prohibit the State Board of Education from developing and implementing additional alternative route teacher licensure programs, as deemed appropriate by the board. The emergency certification program in effect prior to July 1, 2002, shall remain in effect.

      A Standard License – Approved Program Route shall be issued for a five-year period, and may be renewed. Recognizing teaching as a profession, a hiring preference shall be granted to persons holding a Standard License – Approved Program Route or Standard License – Nontraditional Teaching Route over persons holding any other license.

    3. Special License — Expert Citizen.In order to allow a school district to offer specialized or technical courses, the State Department of Education, in accordance with rules and regulations established by the State Board of Education, may grant a one-year expert citizen-teacher license to local business or other professional personnel to teach in a public school or nonpublic school accredited or approved by the state. Such person may begin teaching upon his employment by the local school board and licensure by the Mississippi Department of Education. The board shall adopt rules and regulations to administer the expert citizen-teacher license. A Special License – Expert Citizen may be renewed in accordance with the established rules and regulations of the State Department of Education.
    4. Special License — Nonrenewable.The State Board of Education is authorized to establish rules and regulations to allow those educators not meeting requirements in paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of this subsection (6) to be licensed for a period of not more than three (3) years, except by special approval of the State Board of Education.
    5. Nonlicensed Teaching Personnel.A nonlicensed person may teach for a maximum of three (3) periods per teaching day in a public school district or a nonpublic school accredited/approved by the state. Such person shall submit to the department a transcript or record of his education and experience which substantiates his preparation for the subject to be taught and shall meet other qualifications specified by the commission and approved by the State Board of Education. In no case shall any local school board hire nonlicensed personnel as authorized under this paragraph in excess of five percent (5%) of the total number of licensed personnel in any single school.
    6. Special License — Transitional Bilingual Education.Beginning July 1, 2003, the commission shall grant special licenses to teachers of transitional bilingual education who possess such qualifications as are prescribed in this section. Teachers of transitional bilingual education shall be compensated by local school boards at not less than one (1) step on the regular salary schedule applicable to permanent teachers licensed under this section. The commission shall grant special licenses to teachers of transitional bilingual education who present the commission with satisfactory evidence that they (i) possess a speaking and reading ability in a language, other than English, in which bilingual education is offered and communicative skills in English; (ii) are in good health and sound moral character; (iii) possess a bachelor’s degree or an associate’s degree in teacher education from an accredited institution of higher education; (iv) meet such requirements as to courses of study, semester hours therein, experience and training as may be required by the commission; and (v) are legally present in the United States and possess legal authorization for employment. A teacher of transitional bilingual education serving under a special license shall be under an exemption from standard licensure if he achieves the requisite qualifications therefor. Two (2) years of service by a teacher of transitional bilingual education under such an exemption shall be credited to the teacher in acquiring a Standard Educator License. Nothing in this paragraph shall be deemed to prohibit a local school board from employing a teacher licensed in an appropriate field as approved by the State Department of Education to teach in a program in transitional bilingual education.
    7. In the event any school district meets the highest accreditation standards as defined by the State Board of Education in the accountability system, the State Board of Education, in its discretion, may exempt such school district from any restrictions in paragraph (e) relating to the employment of nonlicensed teaching personnel.
    8. Highly Qualified Teachers.Beginning July 1, 2006, any teacher from any state meeting the federal definition of highly qualified, as described in the No Child Left Behind Act, must be granted a standard five-year license by the State Department of Education.
  4. Administrator License.The State Board of Education is authorized to establish rules and regulations and to administer the licensure process of the school administrators in the State of Mississippi. There will be four (4) categories of administrator licensure with exceptions only through special approval of the State Board of Education.
    1. Administrator License — Nonpracticing.Those educators holding administrative endorsement but having no administrative experience or not serving in an administrative position on January 15, 1997.
    2. Administrator License — Entry Level.Those educators holding administrative endorsement and having met the department’s qualifications to be eligible for employment in a Mississippi school district. Administrator License - Entry Level shall be issued for a five-year period and shall be nonrenewable.
    3. Standard Administrator License — Career Level.An administrator who has met all the requirements of the department for standard administrator licensure.
    4. Administrator License — Nontraditional Route.The board may establish a nontraditional route for licensing administrative personnel. Such nontraditional route for administrative licensure shall be available for persons holding, but not limited to, a master of business administration degree, a master of public administration degree, a master of public planning and policy degree or a doctor of jurisprudence degree from an accredited college or university, with five (5) years of administrative or supervisory experience. Successful completion of the requirements of alternate route licensure for administrators shall qualify the person for a standard administrator license.

      Individuals seeking school administrator licensure under paragraph (b), (c) or (d) shall successfully complete a training program and an assessment process prescribed by the State Board of Education. All applicants for school administrator licensure shall meet all requirements prescribed by the department under paragraph (b), (c) or (d), and the cost of the assessment process required shall be paid by the applicant.

  5. Reciprocity.
    1. The department shall grant a standard license to any individual who possesses a valid standard license from another state and meets minimum Mississippi license requirements or equivalent requirements as determined by the State Board of Education. The issuance of a license by reciprocity to a military-trained applicant or military spouse shall be subject to the provisions of Section 73-50-1.
    2. The department shall grant a nonrenewable special license to any individual who possesses a credential which is less than a standard license or certification from another state. Such special license shall be valid for the current school year plus one (1) additional school year to expire on June 30 of the second year, not to exceed a total period of twenty-four (24) months, during which time the applicant shall be required to complete the requirements for a standard license in Mississippi.
  6. Renewal and Reinstatement of Licenses.The State Board of Education is authorized to establish rules and regulations for the renewal and reinstatement of educator and administrator licenses. Effective May 15, 1997, the valid standard license held by an educator shall be extended five (5) years beyond the expiration date of the license in order to afford the educator adequate time to fulfill new renewal requirements established pursuant to this subsection. An educator completing a master of education, educational specialist or doctor of education degree in May 1997 for the purpose of upgrading the educator’s license to a higher class shall be given this extension of five (5) years plus five (5) additional years for completion of a higher degree.
  7. All controversies involving the issuance, revocation, suspension or any change whatsoever in the licensure of an educator required to hold a license shall be initially heard in a hearing de novo, by the commission or by a subcommittee established by the commission and composed of commission members, or by a hearing officer retained and appointed by the commission, for the purpose of holding hearings. Any complaint seeking the denial of issuance, revocation or suspension of a license shall be by sworn affidavit filed with the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development. The decision thereon by the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer, shall be final, unless the aggrieved party shall appeal to the State Board of Education, within ten (10) days, of the decision of the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer. An appeal to the State Board of Education shall be perfected upon filing a notice of the appeal and by the prepayment of the costs of the preparation of the record of proceedings by the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer. An appeal shall be on the record previously made before the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer, unless otherwise provided by rules and regulations adopted by the board. The decision of the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer shall not be disturbed on appeal if supported by substantial evidence, was not arbitrary or capricious, within the authority of the commission, and did not violate some statutory or constitutional right. The State Board of Education in its authority may reverse, or remand with instructions, the decision of the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer. The decision of the State Board of Education shall be final.
    1. The State Board of Education, acting through the commission, may deny an application for any teacher or administrator license for one or more of the following:
      1. Lack of qualifications which are prescribed by law or regulations adopted by the State Board of Education;
      2. The applicant has a physical, emotional or mental disability that renders the applicant unfit to perform the duties authorized by the license, as certified by a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist;
      3. The applicant is actively addicted to or actively dependent on alcohol or other habit-forming drugs or is a habitual user of narcotics, barbiturates, amphetamines, hallucinogens or other drugs having similar effect, at the time of application for a license;
      4. Fraud or deceit committed by the applicant in securing or attempting to secure such certification and license;
      5. Failing or refusing to furnish reasonable evidence of identification;
      6. The applicant has been convicted, has pled guilty or entered a plea of nolo contendere to a felony, as defined by federal or state law. For purposes of this subparagraph (vi) of this paragraph (a), a “guilty plea” includes a plea of guilty, entry of a plea of nolo contendere, or entry of an order granting pretrial or judicial diversion;
      7. The applicant or licensee is on probation or post-release supervision for a felony or conviction, as defined by federal or state law. However, this disqualification expires upon the end of the probationary or post-release supervision period.
    2. The State Board of Education, acting through the commission, shall deny an application for any teacher or administrator license, or immediately revoke the current teacher or administrator license, for one or more of the following:
      1. If the applicant or licensee has been convicted, has pled guilty or entered a plea of nolo contendere to a sex offense as defined by federal or state law. For purposes of this subparagraph (i) of this paragraph (b), a “guilty plea” includes a plea of guilty, entry of a plea of nolo contendere, or entry of an order granting pretrial or judicial diversion;
      2. The applicant or licensee is on probation or post-release supervision for a sex offense conviction, as defined by federal or state law;
      3. The license holder has fondled a student as described in Section 97-5-23, or had any type of sexual involvement with a student as described in Section 97-3-95; or
      4. The license holder has failed to report sexual involvement of a school employee with a student as required by Section 97-5-24.
  8. The State Board of Education, acting through the commission, may revoke, suspend or refuse to renew any teacher or administrator license for specified periods of time or may place on probation, reprimand a licensee, or take other disciplinary action with regard to any license issued under this chapter for one or more of the following:
    1. Breach of contract or abandonment of employment may result in the suspension of the license for one (1) school year as provided in Section 37-9-57;
    2. Obtaining a license by fraudulent means shall result in immediate suspension and continued suspension for one (1) year after correction is made;
    3. Suspension or revocation of a certificate or license by another state shall result in immediate suspension or revocation and shall continue until records in the prior state have been cleared;
    4. The license holder has been convicted, has pled guilty or entered a plea of nolo contendere to a felony, as defined by federal or state law. For purposes of this paragraph, a “guilty plea” includes a plea of guilty, entry of a plea of nolo contendere, or entry of an order granting pretrial or judicial diversion;
    5. The license holder knowingly and willfully committing any of the acts affecting validity of mandatory uniform test results as provided in Section 37-16-4(1);
    6. The license holder has engaged in unethical conduct relating to an educator/student relationship as identified by the State Board of Education in its rules;
    7. The license holder served as superintendent or principal in a school district during the time preceding and/or that resulted in the Governor declaring a state of emergency and the State Board of Education appointing a conservator;
    8. The license holder submitted a false certification to the State Department of Education that a statewide test was administered in strict accordance with the Requirements of the Mississippi Statewide Assessment System; or
    9. The license holder has failed to comply with the Procedures for Reporting Infractions as promulgated by the commission and approved by the State Board of Education pursuant to subsection (15) of this section.

      For purposes of this subsection, probation shall be defined as a length of time determined by the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer, and based on the severity of the offense in which the license holder shall meet certain requirements as prescribed by the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer. Failure to complete the requirements in the time specified shall result in immediate suspension of the license for one (1) year.

    1. Dismissal or suspension of a licensed employee by a local school board pursuant to Section 37-9-59 may result in the suspension or revocation of a license for a length of time which shall be determined by the commission and based upon the severity of the offense.
    2. Any offense committed or attempted in any other state shall result in the same penalty as if committed or attempted in this state.
    3. A person may voluntarily surrender a license. The surrender of such license may result in the commission recommending any of the above penalties without the necessity of a hearing. However, any such license which has voluntarily been surrendered by a licensed employee may only be reinstated by a majority vote of all members of the commission present at the meeting called for such purpose.
    1. A person whose license has been suspended or surrendered on any grounds except criminal grounds may petition for reinstatement of the license after one (1) year from the date of suspension or surrender, or after one-half (1/2) of the suspended or surrendered time has lapsed, whichever is greater. A person whose license has been suspended or revoked on any grounds or violations under subsection (12) of this section may be reinstated automatically or approved for a reinstatement hearing, upon submission of a written request to the commission. A license suspended, revoked or surrendered on criminal grounds may be reinstated upon petition to the commission filed after expiration of the sentence and parole or probationary period imposed upon conviction. A revoked, suspended or surrendered license may be reinstated upon satisfactory showing of evidence of rehabilitation. The commission shall require all who petition for reinstatement to furnish evidence satisfactory to the commission of good character, good mental, emotional and physical health and such other evidence as the commission may deem necessary to establish the petitioner’s rehabilitation and fitness to perform the duties authorized by the license.
    2. A person whose license expires while under investigation by the Office of Educator Misconduct for an alleged violation may not be reinstated without a hearing before the commission if required based on the results of the investigation.
  9. Reporting procedures and hearing procedures for dealing with infractions under this section shall be promulgated by the commission, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education. The revocation or suspension of a license shall be effected at the time indicated on the notice of suspension or revocation. The commission shall immediately notify the superintendent of the school district or school board where the teacher or administrator is employed of any disciplinary action and also notify the teacher or administrator of such revocation or suspension and shall maintain records of action taken. The State Board of Education may reverse or remand with instructions any decision of the commission, its subcommittee or hearing officer regarding a petition for reinstatement of a license, and any such decision of the State Board of Education shall be final.
  10. An appeal from the action of the State Board of Education in denying an application, revoking or suspending a license or otherwise disciplining any person under the provisions of this section shall be filed in the Chancery Court of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi, on the record made, including a verbatim transcript of the testimony at the hearing. The appeal shall be filed within thirty (30) days after notification of the action of the board is mailed or served and the proceedings in chancery court shall be conducted as other matters coming before the court. The appeal shall be perfected upon filing notice of the appeal and by the prepayment of all costs, including the cost of preparation of the record of the proceedings by the State Board of Education, and the filing of a bond in the sum of Two Hundred Dollars ($200.00) conditioned that if the action of the board be affirmed by the chancery court, the applicant or license holder shall pay the costs of the appeal and the action of the chancery court.
  11. All such programs, rules, regulations, standards and criteria recommended or authorized by the commission shall become effective upon approval by the State Board of Education as designated by appropriate orders entered upon the minutes thereof.
  12. The granting of a license shall not be deemed a property right nor a guarantee of employment in any public school district. A license is a privilege indicating minimal eligibility for teaching in the public school districts of Mississippi. This section shall in no way alter or abridge the authority of local school districts to require greater qualifications or standards of performance as a prerequisite of initial or continued employment in such districts.
  13. In addition to the reasons specified in subsections (12) and (13) of this section, the board shall be authorized to suspend the license of any licensee for being out of compliance with an order for support, as defined in Section 93-11-153. The procedure for suspension of a license for being out of compliance with an order for support, and the procedure for the reissuance or reinstatement of a license suspended for that purpose, and the payment of any fees for the reissuance or reinstatement of a license suspended for that purpose, shall be governed by Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163, as the case may be. Actions taken by the board in suspending a license when required by Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163 are not actions from which an appeal may be taken under this section. Any appeal of a license suspension that is required by Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163 shall be taken in accordance with the appeal procedure specified in Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163, as the case may be, rather than the procedure specified in this section. If there is any conflict between any provision of Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163 and any provision of this chapter, the provisions of Section 93-11-157 or 93-11-163, as the case may be, shall control.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 10; Laws, 1988, ch. 464, § 1; Laws, 1988, ch. 536, § 1; Laws, 1989, ch. 373, § 1; Laws, 1991, ch. 502, § 1; Laws, 1991, ch. 534, § 1; Laws, 1992, ch. 519, § 2; Laws, 1992, ch. 524, § 2; Laws, 1993, ch. 594, § 1; Laws, 1994, ch. 596, § 1; Laws, 1994, ch. 581, § 16; Laws, 1996, ch. 507, § 9; Laws, 1996, ch. 540, § 1; Laws, 1997, ch. 545, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 432, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 550, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 587, § 1; Laws, 2004, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 2004, ch. 478, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 504, § 3; reenacted without change, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 2; reenacted and amended, Laws, 2009, ch. 445, § 2; Laws, 2011, ch. 514, § 1; Laws, 2012, ch. 376, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 350, § 3; Laws, 2013, ch. 496, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 39; Laws, 2014, ch. 318, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 8; Laws, 2014, ch. 458, § 3; Laws, 2014, ch. 536, § 3; Laws, 2015, ch. 470, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 22, 2015); Laws, 2019, ch. 455, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 9 of ch. 507, Laws of 1996, effective July 1, 1996, amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 540, Laws of 1996, effective July 1, 1996, also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision, and Publication authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective.

Section 1 of ch. 432, Laws of 2000, effective from and after its passage (approved April 18, 2000), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 550, Laws of 2000, effective from and after July 1, 2000, also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 550, Laws of 2000, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect earlier.

Section 1 of ch. 409 Laws of 2004, effective from and after July 1, 2004 (approved April 26, 2004), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 478, Laws of 2004, effective from and after July 1, 2004 (approved May 1, 2004), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the July 8, 2004, meeting of the Committee.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a typographical error in paragraph (7)(a). The word “have” was changed to “having” preceding “no administrative experience.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its June 26, 2007, meeting.

Section 2 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 26, 2009), amended this section. Section 2 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 2 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a typographical error in (12)(h) by inserting the word “or” following “as described in Section 97-5-23.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its July 13, 2011, meeting.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in subsection (8)(a) of Section 1, Chapter 496 (SB 2188), which amended this section. A reference in the act to “Section 1 of this act” was changed to “Section 1 of Senate Bill No. 2419, 2013 Regular Session.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 1, 2013, meeting.

Section 1 of Senate Bill No. 2419, 2013 Regular Session, is codified as Section 73-50-1, and at the direction of the Co-counsel for the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation, the reference to Section 1 of Senate Bill No. 2419, 2013 Regular Session, has been changed to reflect the codification of the section.

Section 1 of ch. 318, Laws of 2014, effective from and after passage (approved March 13, 2014), amended this section. Section 8 of ch. 397, Laws of 2014, effective from and after July 1, 2014 (approved March 19, 2014), Section 3 of ch. 458, Laws of 2014, effective from and after passage (approved March 31, 2014), and Section 3 of ch. 536, Laws of 2014, effective from and after July 1, 2014 (approved April 24, 2014), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of all four amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision, and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision, and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the July 24, 2014, meeting of the Committee.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in (12)( l ) by substituting “The license holder” for “The licensure holder.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 17, 2015, meeting.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in (12)(m) by substituting “subsection (15) of this section” for “ Section 37-3-2(15).” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 5, 2016, meeting.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected errors in (4)(b) and (6)(d) by substituting “subsections (11), (12), (13), (14) and (15) of this section” for “ Section 37-3-2(11), (12), (13), (14) and (15), Mississippi Code of 1972” and “paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of this subsection (6)” for “subsection (6)(a), (b) or (c),” respectively. The Joint Committee ratified the corrections at its August 15, 2017, meeting.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2006, ch. 504 § 1(1), codified at §37-161-1(1), provides as follows:

“SECTION 1. (1) This act shall be known and may be referred to as the ‘Mississippi Education Reform Act of 2006.’ ”

Section 19 of Chapter 504, Laws of 2006, provided for the repeal of this section, effective June 30, 2009. Section 1 of Chapter 345, Laws of 2009, amended Section 19 of Chapter 504, Laws of 2006, to remove the repealer for this section.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2000 amendment (ch. 432) deleted the second through fourth sentences of (6)(a)(iii) and deleted (6)(a)(iii)1. through (6)(a)(iii)4.; added the second and third sentences in (9); and made a minor stylistic change.

The second 2000 amendment (ch. 550) rewrote (6)(a)(ii); added the second and third sentences in (9); added “The applicant” throughout (11); substituted “an applicant’s certificate ” for “a certificate” in (11)(d); in (11)(e), deleted “Committed ” at the beginning and inserted “committed by the applicant ”; substituted “Failing or refusing” for “Fails or refuses ” in (11)(f); added “The license holder ” throughout (12); substituted “subsections (12) and (13)” for “Subsection (8) ” in (19); and made minor stylistic changes.

The 2002 amendment rewrote the section.

The first 2004 amendment ch. 409, substituted “Beginning January 1, 2004, an individual who” for “Beginning January 1, 2003, an individual who possesses at least a bachelor’s degree from a nationally or regionally accredited institution of higher learning who” at the beginning of (6)(b); inserted “or a curriculum of study in which the student matriculates in the fall or spring semester” near the beginning of (6)(b)(i); and inserted “or the fall or spring semester option” near the beginning of (6)(iii).

The second 2004 amendment ch. 478, rewrote (13)(c); and inserted “or revoked” in the second sentence, and “suspended or surrendered” in the third sentence of (14).

The 2006 amendment added (6)(h); and in (8), deleted “and has a minimum of two (2) years of full-time teaching or administrator experience” from the end of (a), and deleted “or who possesses a standard license from another state but has less than two (2) years of full-time teaching or administration experience” from the end of the first sentence in (b).

The first 2009 amendment (ch. 345), reenacted this section without change.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 445), reenacted and amended the section by rewriting (6)(g).

The 2011 amendment deleted the former next-to-last paragraph of (6)(b)(viii), which read: “The State Department of Education shall compile and report, in consultation with the commission, information relating to nontraditional teacher preparation internship programs, including the number of programs available and geographic areas in which they are available, the number of individuals who apply for and possess a nontraditional conditional license, the subject areas in which individuals who possess nontraditional conditional licenses are teaching and where they are teaching, and shall submit its findings and recommendations to the legislative committees on education by December 1, 2004”; rewrote (7)(d); added language beginning “and meets minimum Mississippi license” at the end of (8); inserted “or suspension” following “Revocation” in (11)(d); added (12)(g), (h), and (i); and made minor stylistic changes.

The 2012 amendment added (4)(b); and added “subject to a process and schedule determined by the State Board of Education” at the end of (5)(b).

The first 2013 amendment (ch. 350), inserted the subsection (8) designator and added the last sentence in (8)(a).

The second 2013 amendment (ch. 496), added (6)(a)(v), the first paragraph in (b) and (b)(i) and (ii); in (11)(d), substituted “Revocation, suspension or surrender” for “Revocation or suspension” and added the language beginning “shall result in immediate denial”; added the last sentence in (10)(h); added (10)(i); added the last sentence in (12)(d); added “shall result in immediate suspension or revocation” in (12)(e); added (12)(f); rewrote (14)(a); added (14)(b); and inserted “Mississippi” following “First Judicial District of Hinds County” in the first sentence of (16).

The third 2013 amendment (ch. 497), inserted “district” following “public school” in the first sentence of (6)(e); added the last sentence in (8); added “Mississippi” following “Hinds County” in (16); and substituted “school districts” for “schools” in the second sentence in (18).

The first 2014 amendment (ch. 318), in (6)(b)(ii), inserted “or passing Praxis II scores at or above the national recommended score” and deleted “from the approved teacher education program” at the end of the sentence.

The second 2014 amendment (ch. 397) substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” in (2); inserted “Twenty-one” at the beginning of (6)(a)(v)1 and (6)(b)(i) and made related changes.

The third 2014 amendment (ch. 458), in (2), substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” near the end of the second sentence; in (10), substituted “Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education” for “Commission of Teacher and Administrator Education”; added (12)(k) and made related changes.

The fourth 2014 amendment (ch. 536), added the last sentence in (6)(a)(ii).

The 2015 amendment, in (12), rewrote the introductory paragraph, which read: “The State Board of Education, acting on the recommendation of the commission, may revoke or suspend any teacher or administrator license for specified periods of time for one or more of the following,” added ( l ) and (m), and made related stylistic changes.

The 2019 amendment, in (2), designated the former first and second sentences (2)(a) and the last three sentences (2)(b), and in (2)(a), in the second sentence, inserted “of the four (4)” and “as such districts existed…decennial census, including” and added the last sentence; rewrote (10), (11) and (12); in (14)(a), substituted references to “suspended” and “suspension” for “revoked” and “revocation” in the first sentence, and inserted “or revoked” in the second sentence; and inserted “its subcommittee or hearing officer” in the last sentence of (15).

Cross References —

Notification of Department of Education that certificated person has been convicted of a felony or sex offense, see §37-3-51.

Effect of abandonment of employment, see §37-9-57.

Violations of mandatory uniform test security procedures, enforcement and penalties, see §37-16-4.

Failure to repay critical needs teacher forgivable loan and interest as cause for revocation of teaching license, see §37-106-55.

Mississippi Education Reform Act of 2006, see §37-161-1 et seq.

Federal Aspects—

No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, P.L. 107-110, 115 Stat. 1425, see 20 USCS §§ 6301 et seq.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school district is not required to pay the salary of an assistant teacher while such individual is completing student teaching requirements in another district. Lee, Dec. 12, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0577.

§ 37-3-3. Office and seal of department.

The office of the State Department of Education shall be in the City of Jackson, Mississippi. The state capitol commission shall provide suitable quarters therefor.

The state superintendent of public education shall provide and keep a seal having around the margin thereof the words “State Department of Education” with the coat of arms of the state in the center. All official acts of the department shall be certified under said seal.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6556; 1942, §§ 6245-02, 6245-11; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, §§ 2, 11; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 9, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982).

§ 37-3-3.1. State Department of Education board room designated the Senator Grey Ferris Board Room.

The Board Room at the State Department of Education, located in Jackson, Mississippi, shall be named the Senator Grey Ferris Board Room. The Department of Finance and Administration shall prepare a distinctive plaque to be placed in a prominent place within the Senator Grey Ferris Board Room, which states the background, accomplishments and service to the state of the Honorable Grey Ferris.

HISTORY: Laws, 2009, ch. 460, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2009.

§ 37-3-4. School Executive Management Institute; basic and continuing education courses for school board members; additional required training for local school board members and the local superintendent; exemption of certain school administrators.

  1. There is established within the State Department of Education, the School Executive Management Institute. The director shall be appointed by the State Board of Education upon recommendation by the State Superintendent of Public Education. The State Superintendent of Public Education, with the approval of the State Board of Education, shall assign sufficient staff members from the State Department of Education to the institute.
  2. It shall be the purpose and duty of the institute to conduct thorough empirical studies and analyses of the school management needs of the local school districts throughout the state, to make recommendations to the State Board of Education regarding standards and programs of training that aid in the development of administrative and management skills of local school administrators, and to conduct such programs related to these purposes as they are implemented under guidelines established by the State Board of Education.
  3. The State Board of Education shall develop and implement through the School Executive Management Institute a program for the development of administrative and management skills of local school administrators under which all local school administrators employed by a school district shall be required to participate. Subject to the extent of appropriations available for such purpose, the School Executive Management Institute or the Mississippi School Boards Association shall be required to offer courses at least twice a year on the uses of technology to school district principals, superintendents and other administrative personnel. These courses shall relate to the application of technology to learning, as well as administrative problems.
    1. The institute shall have an advisory board composed of ten (10) qualified members appointed by the State Board of Education after consultation with the State Superintendent of Public Education. This advisory board will offer recommendations to the institute on the types of training to be instituted and supported. The membership of the advisory board shall be composed of the following members, two (2) to be appointed from each congressional district: three (3) school administrators; one (1) representative of public community/junior colleges within the state; one (1) representative of a school of education in an institution of higher learning within the state; two (2) local school board members; one (1) classroom teacher; and two (2) laypersons. In making the initial appointments, three (3) members shall be appointed for a term of one (1) year, three (3) members shall be appointed for a term of two (2) years, two (2) members shall be appointed for a term of three (3) years, and two (2) members shall be appointed for a term of four (4) years. Thereafter, all members shall be appointed for a term of four (4) years. The advisory board shall meet when called by the director, but in no event fewer than three (3) times per year. The members of the advisory board shall be compensated at the per diem rate authorized by Section 25-3-69 and reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses as authorized by Section 25-3-41.
    2. Board members of the Oxford-Lafayette Business and Industrial Complex shall be paid per diem and reimbursed for expenses and mileage from local funds in accordance with Section 37-6-13.
    1. Basic Education Course. The Mississippi School Boards Association shall be responsible for preparing and conducting a course of training for basic education for the local school board members of this state, in order for board members to carry out their duties more effectively and be exposed to new ideas involving school restructuring. The basic course shall be known as the “School Board Member Training Course” and shall consist of at least twelve (12) hours of training. The Mississippi School Boards Association shall issue certificates of completion to those school board members who complete the basic education course.
    2. Continuing Education Course. The Mississippi School Boards Association shall be responsible for preparing and conducting a course of training for continuing education for the local school board members of this state, in order for board members to carry out their duties more effectively and be exposed to new ideas involving school restructuring. The continuing education course shall be known as the “Continuing Education Course for School Board Members” and shall consist of at least six (6) hours of training.
    3. Additional Required Training. Effective July 1, 2009, local school board members and the local superintendent that serve in a district with one or more failing schools as determined by the Mississippi Board of Education accountability system as provided for in Section 37-17-6, or serving in a school district that has a serious financial condition as determined by the State Auditor as provided for in Section 37-9-18, shall annually attend additional training provided by the Mississippi School Boards Association.

      The Mississippi School Boards Association shall, subject to appropriation, develop and conduct training specific to the local boards’ role in improving learning outcomes and effective financial management. Such training shall be known as “Improving Student Outcomes and Academic Success” which shall consist of not less than six (6) hours of training and “Effective Financial Management In Local School Districts” which shall consist of not less than six (6) hours of training. Any local board members and the local superintendent that serve in a school district that meets the criteria for both of the training modules shall annually attend both training sessions for a total of not less than twelve (12) hours of training. At such time the school district is determined to no longer have failing schools; or no longer has a serious financial condition, such board member and the local superintendent shall no longer be required to attend the training as provided herein. The training as required under subsection (c) shall not replace, but is in addition to, the training required for new school board members and continuing board members as required under Section 37-7-306.

      The Mississippi School Boards Association shall issue certificates of completion to those school board members who complete the continuing education course. All costs and expenses for preparing and conducting the basic education course and the continuing education course provided for in this paragraph shall be paid out of any funds which are made available to the Mississippi School Boards Association upon authorization and appropriation by the Legislature to the State Department of Education.

  4. The Mississippi School Boards Association shall prepare and submit a report each year to the State Board of Education and to the respective Chairs of the House and Senate Education Committees describing the activities and providing an evaluation of the continuing education programs offered by the association each year.
  5. The School Executive Management Institute of the State Department of Education, or the Mississippi School Boards Association with the oversight of the State Board of Education, at least twice a year, shall prepare and conduct required courses of training for continuing education for the elementary and secondary school principals employed by the school districts of this state, in order for those principals to carry out their duties more effectively and be exposed to new ideas involving school management. The continuing education course shall be known as the “Continuing Education Course for Principals” and shall consist of at least six (6) hours of training. The content of the continuing education courses and the time and place such courses are to be conducted shall be determined by the School Executive Management Institute or the Mississippi School Boards Association; however, to the extent practicable, such training sessions shall be held within geographical proximity of local districts in order that travel times and costs shall not be prohibitive.

    The institute shall issue certificates of completion to those principals who complete such courses. All costs and expenses for preparing and conducting the basic and continuing education courses provided for in this subsection shall be paid out of any funds which are made available to the institute upon authorization and appropriation by the Legislature.

  6. School district principals and other administrators with career level certifications at schools meeting the highest levels of accreditation standards, as defined by the State Board of Education, are exempt from the requirements of this section, subject to approval of the local school district superintendent.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 11; Laws, 1991, ch. 502, § 10; Laws, 1992, ch. 519, § 3; Laws, 1998, ch. 564, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 611, § 4; Laws, 2006, ch. 334, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 335, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 4; Laws, 2008, ch. 338, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 3; Laws, 2009, ch. 445, § 3; Laws, 2009, ch. 516, § 5; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 40, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 334, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 9, 2006), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 335, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 13, 2006), and Section 4 of ch. 417, Laws of 2006, effective July 1, 2006 (approved March 15, 2006), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of all three amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the May 31, 2006 meeting of the Committee.

Section 3 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 26, 2009), amended this section. Section 3 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), and Section 5 of ch. 516, Laws of 2009, effective from and after passage (approved April 8, 2009), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 3 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1990, Chapter 588, § 8, amended this section effective July 1, 1990, provided that the Legislature by concurrent resolution adopted by the House and Senate in session prior to July 1, 1990, declared that sufficient funds were dedicated and made available for the implementation of Chapter 588. However, funds were not made available by the Legislature prior to July 1, 1990, and by direction of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Mississippi the amendatory provisions have not been printed in this volume. The text of the amendment can be found in the Advance Sheet Acts of the 1990 Legislative Session published by the Secretary of State’s Office, Jackson, Mississippi.

The United States Attorney General by letter dated July 9, 1991, interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1991, ch. 502, § 10.

On July 13, 1998, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1998, ch. 564, § 1.

Section 7-7-2 provides that the words “State Auditor of Public Accounts,” “State Auditor” and “Auditor” appearing in the laws of this state in connection with the performance of Auditor’s functions shall mean the State Fiscal Officer.

Section 27-104-6 provides that wherever the term “State Fiscal Officer” appears in any law it shall mean “Executive Director of the Department of Finance and Administration.”

Laws of 2009, ch. 516 § 1 provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the “Children First Act of 2009.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment deleted “on July 1, 1984” following “established” in the first sentence of (1); rewrote (5); inserted present (6), and redesignated former (6) and (7) as present (7) and (8); and, in present (7), deleted the last sentence.

The first 2006 amendment (ch. 334), in (5)(a), substituted “The Mississippi School Boards Association shall be responsible for preparing and conducting” for “Subject to the extent of appropriations available for such purpose, the School Executive Management Institute of the State Department of Education shall prepare and conduct” in the first full sentence and “Mississippi School Boards Association” for “School Executive Management Institute” in the last sentence; inserted “basic education course and the” following “preparing and conducting the” in the last paragraph of (5).

The second 2006 amendment (ch. 335), made the same changes as those in Laws of 2006, ch. 334, § 1.

The third 2006 amendment (ch. 417), rewrote (8).

The 2008 amendment, in (5), added (c), and added the next-to-last paragraph.

The first 2009 amendment (ch. 345) reenacted this section without change.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 445) reenacted and amended the section by, in the first paragraph of (5)(c), substituting “July 1, 2009” for “July 1, 2008,” inserting “and the local superintendent,” and substituting “failing schools” for “underperforming schools,” in the second paragraph of (5)(c), inserting “and the local superintendent” both times it appears and substituting “failing schools” for “underperforming schools” in the fourth sentence, and rewriting (8).

The third 2009 amendment (ch. 516), in (5), in (c), substituted “July 1, 2009” for “July 1, 2008,” inserted “and the local superintendent,” and substituted “failing schools” for “underperforming schools,” and in the next-to-last paragraph, inserted “and the local superintendent” both times it appears, and substituted “failing schools” for “underperforming schools”; and in (8), substituted “the highest levels of accreditation standards” for “Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards” and inserted “as defined by the State Board of Education” thereafter.

The 2013 amendment in (3), inserted “employed by a school district” preceding “shall be required to participate” in the first sentence, and “school district” following “uses of technology to” in the second sentence; in (7), inserted “employed by the school districts” preceding “of this state, in order for” and “those” thereafter at the end of the first sentence; and in (8), inserted “school district” at the beginning of the subsection and preceding “superintendent” at the end.

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Principals and administrators with career level certifications at schools with Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards exempt from the provisions of this section, subject to approval of the local superintendent, see §37-17-12.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A course conducted by the School Executive Management Institute of the State Department of Education may not charge a fee to participants; however, any individual, group or association approved by the State Board of Education may charge participants for the course of training. Thompson, Oct. 30, 1991, A.G. Op. #91-0795.

The State Department of Education does not have to conduct the training if no funds are appropriated, it must establish appropriate criteria for same and the State Board of Education may approve a course of training offered by any individual, group or association which meets the criteria established. Thompson, Oct. 30, 1991, A.G. Op. #91-0795.

Appointments to this board should be reviewed under the last five-district plan which was in effect. Canon, Jan. 16, 2003, A.G. Op. #03-0016.

School board members must receive six hours of continuing education training during the 2004-2005 school year. Chaney, Aug. 6, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0334.

The Mississippi School Boards Association has the authority to charge an amount equal to the actual cost of training for continuing education for school board members. Chaney, Aug. 6, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0334.

§ 37-3-5. General duties of department; grants of property to public and agricultural high schools; administration of department.

The State Department of Education is hereby charged with the execution of all laws relating to the administrative, supervisory and consultative services to the public schools and agricultural high schools of the school districts throughout the State of Mississippi. The State Department of Education is also authorized to grant property to public school districts and agricultural high schools of the State of Mississippi.

Subject to the direction of the State Board of Education as provided by law, the administration, management and control of the department is hereby vested in the State Superintendent of Public Education, who shall be directly responsible for the rightful functioning thereof.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-02; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 2; Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 3; Laws, 1996, ch. 534, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 41, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment inserted “the school districts throughout” in the first sentence and substituted “school districts” for “schools” in the second sentence of the first paragraph.

Cross References —

Appointment and compensation of personnel of department and requirement of adherence to appropriated sums, see §37-3-13.

Duty of the state department of education to establish an instructional program and management system for local school districts, see §37-3-49.

Requirement that the State Department of Education devise a form and a procedure for reporting the number of compulsory attendance violations and other information concerning public school attendance, see §37-13-91.

Implementation of a statewide assessment testing program, see §37-16-1 et seq.

Department’s responsibility to implement a statewide system of assistant teachers, see §37-21-7.

Authority to establish county agricultural high schools, see §37-27-1.

Upon request department to provide information and technical assistance to Charter School Authorizer Board, see §37-28-13.

Authority to establish junior colleges, see §37-29-1.

Administration by the state board of education of vocational rehabilitation law, see §37-33-19.

Duties of state department of Human Services as to the vocational rehabilitation for the blind law, see §37-33-59.

Duties of the state department of education with respect to the Mississippi School for Math and Science, see §37-139-7.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 84.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 188, 191–203.

§ 37-3-7. Study of costs of insurance on school buildings and facilities.

  1. It shall be the duty and obligation of the State Department of Education, in addition to all other duties and responsibilities imposed upon it by law, to make a survey and study relative to the problem of the cost of insuring public school buildings and other school facilities in this state. Such study and survey shall have as its purpose and object the development and ascertainment of the amount of insurance premiums paid by the school districts of this state for fire, extended coverage and other hazard insurance upon public school buildings and other school facilities in this state, the amount of losses paid by insurance companies under and by virtue of such insurance, the ratio of losses with respect to premiums collected, and such other facts and information with reference to the insurance of public school buildings and other school facilities and the cost thereof as shall be necessary and desirable.
  2. In making such study and survey, the State Department of Education shall be authorized and empowered to inspect and examine the financial records and accounts of the school districts of this state and of such other local, county and state agencies and instrumentalities as shall be deemed to be proper and desirable. It shall be the duty and obligation of all such school districts to prepare and file with the State Department of Education such reports relative to insurance premiums paid, losses sustained or incurred, and other pertinent information with reference to the problem of insurance on school buildings and other school facilities as the State Department of Education shall request.
  3. It shall be the duty and obligation of the State Insurance Commissioner, the State Fire Marshal, all other agencies of the State of Mississippi and the State Rating Bureau to cooperate with and assist the State Department of Education in the making of the study and survey herein provided for to the end that complete and accurate information shall be developed, and, for such purpose, it shall be the duty and obligation of all such agencies to furnish, upon request of the State Department of Education, all information, material and statistics relating to such study and survey as shall be within the keeping and possession of such agency.
  4. The information developed by the State Department of Education shall be a public record and shall be available for inspection by any interested party at all proper times.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-09.5; Laws, 1960, ch. 313, §§ 1-5; Laws, 1970, ch. 365, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 546, § 12; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 8, eff from and after July 1, 2011.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment deleted “the state department of audit” following “state insurance commissioner” near the beginning of (3).

The 2011 amendment deleted “continuing” preceding “survey and study relative to the problem,” near the beginning of (1); deleted “and a summary thereof shall be included in the annual report of the State Department of Education” from the end of (4).

Cross References —

General powers and duties of the state department of audit, see §7-7-211.

Authority of boards of trustees of school districts to insure school property, see §37-7-303.

Investigation of fires by the commissioner of insurance, see §45-11-1.

Election and qualifications of the commissioner of insurance, see §83-1-3.

§ 37-3-8. Studies and reports by department of education relating to teaching out of fields and mastery of subject matters.

The State Department of Education shall conduct the following studies and shall report its findings to the State Board of Education on July 1, 1984, and the board shall submit these reports to the next regular session of the Legislature together with any corrective action taken and with recommendations for any further corrective action that might be required:

Teaching out of field. A study shall be conducted to determine the extent to which teachers are teaching out of their fields of certification; the conditions that promote such a practice; and the most appropriate remedies to the problem.

Mastery of subject matter and learning skills. A study shall be conducted to determine the extent to which children master one level of course work before being advanced to the next level; what may be done to assure that progression from one level to another is properly sequenced; and what steps are now being taken to assure that children are progressing satisfactorily toward mastery of the material under study.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 7; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 9, eff from and after July 1, 2011.

Amendment Notes —

The 2011 amendment deleted the former last sentence of the introductory paragraph which read: “The studies shall be updated on an annual basis to determine the effectiveness of the corrective action which has been taken.”

§ 37-3-9. Appointment, qualifications, compensation and bond of State Superintendent of Public Education.

  1. There shall be a State Superintendent of Public Education who shall be appointed by the State Board of Education, with the advice and consent of the Senate, and serve at the board’s will and pleasure. He shall be the Chief Administrative Officer for the State Department of Education and shall administer the department in accordance with the policies established by the State Board of Education. The State Superintendent of Education, serving on July 1, 2011, shall continue to receive the salary that he was receiving on January 1, 2011. From and after the completion of the term of the said superintendent serving on July 1, 2011, the salary of the State Superintendent of Education shall be established by the State Board of Education. The State Superintendent of Public Education shall have at least a master’s degree in any field and a minimum of five (5) years’ experience in administration in the educational field.
  2. The State Superintendent shall give bond in the penalty of Seventy-five Thousand Dollars ($75,000.00), with sureties to be approved by the Governor, conditioned according to law. The bond, when approved, shall be filed and recorded in the Office of the Secretary of State.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6555; 1942, § 6245-03; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 3; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 14; Laws, 1986, ch. 432, § 2; Laws, 1999, ch. 581, § 2; Laws, 2011, ch. 421, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2011.

Amendment Notes —

The 1999 amendment redesignated former (1)(a) as (1) and former (1)(b) as (2); and in (1), substituted “in an amount equal to ninety percent (90%) of the salary of the Commissioner of Higher Education” for “as shall be prescribed by the State Personnel Board.”

The 2011 amendment, in (1), deleted “From and after July 1, 1984” from the beginning of the first sentence; rewrote the third sentence, which read “He shall receive such compensation in an amount equal to ninety percent (90%) of the salary of the Commissioner of Higher Education”; added the fourth sentence; and made minor stylistic changes.

Cross References —

Before whom oaths of state officers may be taken, see §25-1-9.

Filing of oaths of state officers, see §25-1-11.

Giving of guaranty or surety bonds by state officers, see §25-1-13.

Salary of the state superintendent of public education, see §25-3-31.

Power of department heads to select, appoint, and remove subordinates, see §25-3-47.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 176-186.

§ 37-3-11. General duties of state superintendent.

The State Superintendent of Public Education shall perform the duties assigned to him by the State Board of Education, and he shall have the following duties:

To serve as secretary for the State Board of Education;

To be the chief administrative officer of the State Department of Education;

To recommend to the State Board of Education, for its consideration, rules and regulations for the supervision of the public schools and agricultural high schools of the school districts throughout the state and for the efficient organization and conduct of the same;

To collect data and make it available to the state board for determining the proper distribution of the state common school funds;

To keep a complete record of all official acts of the State Superintendent and the acts of the State Board of Education;

To prepare, have printed and furnish all officers charged with the administration of the laws pertaining to the public schools, such blank forms and books as may be necessary to the proper discharge of their duties, which printing is to be paid for out of funds provided by the Legislature;

To have printed in pamphlet form the laws pertaining to the public schools and publish therein forms for conducting school business, the rules and regulations for the government of schools that the State Superintendent or the State Board of Education may recommend, and such other matters as may be deemed worthy of public interest pertaining to the public schools, which printing is to be paid for out of funds provided by the Legislature;

To meet all superintendents annually at such time and place as the State Superintendent shall appoint for the purpose of accumulating facts relative to schools, to review the educational progress made in the various sections of the state, to compare views, discuss problems, hear discussions and suggestions relative to examinations and qualifications of teachers, methods of instruction, textbooks, summer schools for teachers, visitation of schools, consolidation of schools, health work in the schools, vocational education and other matters pertaining to the public school system;

To advise all superintendents upon all matters involving the welfare of the schools, and at the request of any superintendent, to give an opinion upon a written statement of facts on all questions and controversies arising out of the interpretation and construction of the school laws, in regard to rights, powers and duties of school officers and superintendents, and to keep a record of all such decisions. Before giving any opinion, the superintendent may submit the statement of facts to the Attorney General, and it shall be the duty of the Attorney General forthwith to examine such statement and suggest the proper decision to be made upon such fact;

To require annually, and as often as the State Superintendent may deem proper, of all superintendents, detailed reports on the educational business of the various districts;

On or before January 10 in each year to prepare, under the direction of the State Board of Education, the annual information report of the State Department of Education as described in Section 37-151-97;

To determine the number of educable children in the several school districts under rules and regulations prescribed by the State Board of Education; and

To perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the State Board of Education.

HISTORY: Codes, 1930, § 6557; 1942, §§ 6245-07, 6245-07.5; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 7; Laws, 1966, ch. 418, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 364, § 1; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 15; Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 4; Laws, 2006, ch. 550, § 1; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 3; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 42, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Editor’s Notes —

The preamble and § 1 of Laws of 2007, ch. 456, effective March 26, 2007, provide:

“WHEREAS, autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three (3) years of life and is part of a group of disorders known as Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD); and

“WHEREAS, as of the effective date of this act, at least one (1) in one hundred sixty-six (166) individuals in the United States is diagnosed with autism, making it more common than the occurrences in our population of pediatric cancer, diabetes, and AIDS combined; and

“WHEREAS, autism impairs a person’s ability to communicate and relate to others; is associated with rigid routines and repetitive behaviors, such as obsessively arranging objects or following very specific routines; is four (4) times more likely to strike boys than girls; and occurs in all racial, ethnic and social groups; and

“WHEREAS, symptoms of the disability can range from very mild to quite severe, and autistic behaviors not only make life difficult for those individuals who suffer from the disability, but also make life hard for their families, health care providers and teachers; and

“WHEREAS, families coping with this devastating illness are searching for answers about its causes, diagnosis, prevention and treatment, and while there is no known means to prevent the disability, there are indications that early intervention in an appropriate educational setting for at least two (2) years during the preschool years can result in significant improvements for many young children with the disorder; and

“WHEREAS, the Mississippi Legislature recognizes that strategies for how to best identify, treat and accommodate the needs of individuals with autism and of their families are urgently needed in our state; NOW, THEREFORE,

“SECTION 1. (1) The Caring for Mississippi Individuals with Autism Task Force is created to study and make recommendations to the Mississippi Legislature regarding the growing incidence of autism and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), how to identify, treat and accommodate the needs of individuals with autism and ASD, and ways to improve the delivery and coordination of state services provided to individuals with autism and ASD. Members of the task force shall be composed of the following:

“(a) Three (3) persons who are the parents of children with autism or ASD, with one (1) such person to be appointed by the Governor, one (1) to be appointed by the Lieutenant Governor, and one (1) to be appointed by the Speaker of the House;

“(b) One (1) person who is a member of the governing body of a school district, to be appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Education;

“(c) One (1) person who represents the State Department of Education, to be appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Education;

“(d) One (1) person who is the director of special education services in a school district, to be appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Education;

“(e) One (1) person who is a representative of the State Department of Mental Health, to be appointed by the executive director of the department;

“(f) Three (3) persons who are representatives of the State Department of Mental Health who are from regions in the state that provide services to individuals with autism or ASD, to be appointed by the executive director of the department;

“(g) One (1) person who is a representative of the University of Mississippi Medical Center and who provides medical or other services to individuals with autism or ASD, to be appointed by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Mississippi Medical Center;

“(h) Two (2) persons who are Mississippi pediatricians engaged in the private practice of medicine and who provide treatment to individuals with autism or ASD, to be appointed by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Mississippi Medical Center;

“(i) Two (2) persons who are licensed therapists appointed by the President of the Mississippi Speech Language and Hearing Association.

“(2) The task force shall:

“(a) Review the best practices of other states with regard to educational, medical and early intervention services provided to individuals diagnosed with autism or ASD and identify the best practices of other states;

“(b) Review the standard of services provided by local Mississippi school districts and early intervention programs to individuals diagnosed with autism or ASD, identify any additional potential funding sources for school districts, and identify guidelines for measurable educational and instructional goals that can be used by members of the education community for serving children with autism or ASD;

“(c) Assess the medical availability of services currently provided for early screening, diagnosis and treatment of autism and ASD and provide recommendations for enhancing medical services;

“(d) Identify the role of higher education in developing a workforce in Mississippi possessing the skills necessary to assist individuals with autism or ASD in medical, educational, and vocational efforts or in providing additional services associated with autism or ASD;

“(e) Evaluate and identify any and all additional relevant information and make legislative recommendations regarding the development and implementation of a continuum of educational and medical services for individuals with autism or ASD; and

“(f) File a report with those standing committees of the Mississippi State Legislature and with those state agencies having jurisdiction over specific recommendations of the task force, not later than December 1, 2007.

“(3) The task force shall hold its first meeting not later than April 1, 2007, with the date, time and location of the meeting to be designated by the Governor. At that first meeting, the task force shall elect from among its membership a chairman, vice chairman and any other officers determined to be necessary, and shall set the date, time and location of its next meeting.

“(4) The State Department of Mental Health shall provide the staff and other support necessary for the Caring for Mississippi Individuals with Autism Task Force to perform its duties.”

Laws of 2011, ch. 494, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. (1) There is hereby established a Commission on School Payroll, Business and Procurement Efficiency, consisting of the following members:

“(a) The State Fiscal Officer, or his designee;

“(b) The State Superintendent of Education, or his designee;

“(c) A representative of the Mississippi School Superintendents Association (MASS);

“(d) A representative of the Mississippi School Business Officials Association (MSBO);

“(e) A representative of the Mississippi School Boards Association (MSBA);

“(f) Three (3) appointments, one (1) each by the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor and the State Treasurer, of qualified state or school district employees proficient in the areas of fiscal management, procurement, data processing or other fields of school business;

“(g) The Chairmen of the Senate and House Education Committees, who shall serve in an advisory, nonvoting capacity.

“The commission shall meet on a date designated by the State Fiscal Officer and organize by selecting a chairman and adopt rules for conducting business. Members of the commission shall serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed for necessary travel expenses from any available funds for attending official meetings of the commission. The Department of Finance and Administration and the State Department of Education shall jointly provide necessary administrative and clerical support for the functions of the commission.

“(2) The Commission on School Payroll, Business and Procurement Efficiency shall develop an implementation plan to bring coordinated payroll services, business services and procurement services online for all school districts in order to achieve efficiency and make a report thereon to the 2012 Regular Session of the Legislature on or before January 1, 2012. Said commission shall have the following responsibilities:

“(a) Review laws, rules, regulations, policies and procedures which affect the implementation and administration of the school payroll, business and procurement systems;

“(b) Identify required modifications and/or enhancements to the systems; and

“(c) Identify compliance requirements.

“(3) The Commission on School Payroll, Business and Procurement Efficiency shall include in its report to the Legislature at the 2012 Regular Session the anticipated savings and efficiencies to be gained resulting from the consolidation of the payroll, business and procurement functions of school districts to be implemented under this timetable. Such report shall include any technical legislative or administrative recommendations for further consolidation of payroll, business and procurement functions of school districts. Such report shall also include an administrative recommendation for the consolidation or outsourcing of shared information technology, computer and telecommunications services for all school districts, in conjunction with the Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services.”

Laws of 2011, ch. 511, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. (1) The State Superintendent of Public Education, the Commissioner of Higher Education and the Executive Director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, acting jointly, shall develop a comprehensive report and recommendations to the 2012 Legislature on the implementation and operations of ‘Early College High Schools.’ The report shall be submitted no later than January 2, 2012, and shall provide, at a minimum, the following:

“(a) A clear definition of what constitutes an Early College High School and how it enhances education and job-related opportunities;

“(b) The mission and intent of such schools;

“(c) The established criteria for admission;

“(d) An outline of the comprehensive costs of establishing and operating such a school, including transportation, and recommendations on how the state and local school districts should pay those costs;

“(e) A requirement to provide reports on the status and level of success of operating Early College High Schools in other states across the country;

“(f) Implications for student participation in sports programs and other extracurricular activities when attending an Early College High School;

“(g) An identification of and recommendations on any state laws and policies that may need amending to provide authority for the implementation and operation of such schools;

“(h) Recommendations and costs for state and local funding of transportation services for other forms of dual enrollment programs operated across the state; and

“(i) Any other information as determined to be necessary to benefit the scope and detail of the report.

“(2) The State Superintendent of Public Education, the Commissioner of Higher Education and the Executive Director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, acting jointly, shall include specific recommendations on the establishment of an Early College High School Pilot Program in Mississippi in the report submitted to the 2012 Legislature.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2006 amendment deleted former (1), which described the duties of the State Superintendent until July 1, 1984; deleted “(2) From and after July 1, 1984” from the beginning of the first paragraph; in (k), redesignated former (1) as (i), added (ii), and redesignated former (2) through (5) as (iii) through (vi); and made minor stylistic changes.

The 2011 amendment substituted “State Board of Education” for “board of education” in (g); and rewrote (k).

The 2013 amendment substituted “public schools and agricultural high schools of the school districts throughout the state” for “public free schools and agricultural high schools of the state” in (c).

Cross References —

Duty of the attorney general to give written opinion to state officers upon questions of law relating to their offices, see §7-5-25.

Duty of the state superintendent of public education to preside over meetings of the state board of education, see §37-1-1.

Responsibility of the state superintendent of public education for planning functions of the department, see §37-3-12.

Public educational services and equipment for exceptional children, including children with autism, see §37-23-1 et seq.

Duties of the state superintendent of public education in respect to driver education and training programs, see §§37-25-5,37-25-13.

Duty of the state superintendent of public education to inspect and enforce standards of agricultural high schools, see §37-27-17.

Duty of the state superintendent of public education to serve on the state library board, see §39-1-1.

Duty of the state superintendent of public education to serve on board overseeing state fire fighters school, see §45-11-7.

Duty of the state superintendent of public education to consult with the secretary of state in respect to rules and regulations covering correspondence courses, see §75-59-7.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Regulations as to fraternities and similar associations connected with educational institution. 10 A.L.R.3d 389.

Marriage or pregnancy of public school student as ground for expulsion or exclusion, or of restriction of activities. 11 A.L.R.3d 996.

Validity of regulation by public school authorities as to clothes or personal appearance of pupils. 14 A.L.R.3d 1201.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 84.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 188, 191–203.

§ 37-3-12. Responsibility of state superintendent for planning functions of department.

The state superintendent of public education shall be responsible for all planning functions for the department, including collection, analysis and interpretation of all data, information, test results, evaluations and other indicators that are used to formulate policy, identify areas of concern and need and to serve as a basis for short-range and long-range planning. Such planning shall include assembling data, conducting appropriate studies and surveys and sponsoring research and development activities designed to provide information about educational needs and the effect of alternative educational practices.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 16, eff from and after passage (approved December 21, 1982).

Cross References —

General duties of State Superintendent, see §37-3-11.

§ 37-3-13. Appointment and compensation of deputy superintendents, associate superintendents, directors and other employees; exemption of personnel actions of State Department of Education from State Personnel Board procedures for limited time period.

  1. The deputy superintendents, associate superintendents and directors shall be selected by and hold office subject to the will of the State Superintendent of Public Education subject to the approval of the State Board of Education. All other personnel shall be competitively appointed by the State Superintendent and shall be dismissed only for cause in accordance with the rules and regulations of the State Personnel Board. The State Board of Education shall set the salary of the deputy superintendents, associate superintendents and divisional directors, and the members of the teaching staffs and employees of the Mississippi School of the Arts. The State Superintendent, subject to the approval of the State Personnel Board, shall fix the amount of compensation of all other employees of the State Department of Education. All salaries, compensation or expenses of any of the personnel of the department shall be paid upon the requisition of the State Superintendent of Public Education and warrant issued thereunder by the State Auditor out of funds appropriated by the Legislature in a lump sum upon the basis of budgetary requirements submitted by the Superintendent of Education or out of funds otherwise made available. The entire expense of administering the department shall never exceed the amount appropriated therefor, plus funds received from other sources other than state appropriations. For a violation of this provision, the superintendent shall be liable, and he and the sureties on his bond shall be required to restore any such excess.
  2. For a period of two (2) years beginning July 1, 2014, the provisions of subsection (1) regarding the personnel actions of the State Department of Education shall not be subject to the rules and regulations of the State Personnel Board for all personnel employed by the department within that period. All personnel hired within the period of exemption from the state personnel system shall be classified as nonstate service and must meet the criteria of the State Personnel Board as it presently exists for employment.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-04; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 4; Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 17; Laws, 1983, ch. 536, § 5; Laws, 1999, ch. 591, § 9; Laws, 2014, ch. 491, § 3, eff from and after passage (approved April 15, 2014).

Editor’s Notes —

Section 7-7-2 provides that the words “State Auditor of Public Accounts,” “State Auditor” and “Auditor” appearing in the laws of this state in connection with the performance of Auditor’s functions shall mean the State Fiscal Officer whenever they appear.

Section 27-104-6 provides that wherever the term “State Fiscal Officer” appears in any law it shall mean “Executive Director of the Department of Finance and Administration.”

Section37-3-17, referred to in subsection (1), was repealed by Laws of 1982 Extraordinary Session, Chapter 17, § 43, effective from and after July 1, 1984. For present similar provisions, see §37-3-25.

Amendment Notes —

The 1999 amendment inserted “and the members of the teaching staffs and employees of the Mississippi School of the Arts” in (2).

The 2014 amendment deleted former (1) pertaining to appointment of Assistant State Superintendent and other officers and employees prior to July 1, 1984; redesignated former (2) as (1) and deleted “From and after July 1, 1984,” from the beginning of the first sentence; and added (2).

Cross References —

Executive Director of the Department of Finance and Administration generally, see §7-7-1 et seq.

Power of department heads to select, appoint, and remove subordinates, see §25-3-47.

State personnel board generally, see §25-9-109 et seq.

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Mississippi School of the Arts generally, see §37-140-1 et seq.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 176-186.

§§ 37-3-15 through 37-3-23. Repealed.

Repealed by 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 43, eff from and after July 1, 1984.

§37-3-15. [Codes, 1942, § 6245-05; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 5]

§37-3-17. [Codes, 1942, § 6245-06; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 6; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 2; Laws, 1982, ch. 493, § 9]

§37-3-19. [Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3]

§37-3-21. [Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3]

§37-3-23. [Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-15 provided for salaries and expenses of the state superintendent, assistant state superintendent, division directors, supervisors, and employees of state department of education. For present similar provisions, see §§37-3-9,37-3-13.

Former §37-3-17 provided for appointment and compensation of directors and employees of divisions of vocational education and rehabilitation. For present similar provisions, see §37-3-25.

Former §37-3-19 provided for duties of director of division of administration and finance.

Former §37-3-21 provided for duties of director of division of instruction.

Former §37-3-23 provided for duties of the director of division of school building and transportation services.

§ 37-3-25. Appointment, compensation and duties of Director of Division of Vocational and Technical Education.

  1. The Director of the Division of Vocational and Technical Education of the State Department of Education who shall be an associate state superintendent of education shall be appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Education. The director’s salary shall be set by the State Board of Education subject to the approval of the State Personnel Board. His salary, compensation, travel expenses or other expenses shall be provided for out of any funds made available for such purpose by the Legislature, the federal government, or other gifts or grants. The director shall be responsible to the State Superintendent of Public Education for the proper administration of the programs of vocational and technical education in conformity with the policies adopted by the State Board of Education and shall be responsible for appointing any necessary supervisors, assistants, and employees to assist in carrying out the programs of vocational and technical education. The director shall have the authority to employ, compensate, terminate, promote, demote, transfer or reprimand employees of the division. The salary and compensation of such employees shall be subject to the rules and regulations adopted and promulgated by the State Personnel Board as created under Section 25-9-101 et seq. However, if for any reason within the two-year period beginning July 1, 2014, a new Director of the Division of Vocational and Technical Education or other personnel within the division are employed by the department, the employment shall not be subject to the rules and regulations of the State Personnel Board, except as otherwise provided in Section 25-9-127(4).
  2. The Director of the Division of Vocational and Technical Education, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education, shall have charge of and be responsible for vocational and technical education training in:
    1. Agriculture;
    2. Occupational and consumer home economics;
    3. Consumer and homemaking education;
    4. Trades and industry;
    5. Distributive education;
    6. Secondary adult education;
    7. Teacher training and supervision;
    8. Business and office;
    9. Health;
    10. Industrial arts;
    11. Guidance services;
    12. Technical education;
    13. Cooperative education; and
    14. All other specialized training not requiring a bachelors degree, with the exception of programs of nursing education regulated under the provisions of Section 37-129-1.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3; Laws, 1982, ch. 493, § 6; Laws, 1992, ch. 482, § 1; Laws, 1999, ch. 572, § 2; Laws, 2014, ch. 491, § 4, eff from and after passage (approved April 15, 2014).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1990, ch. 424, § 1, effective June 30, 1990, amended Laws of 1982, ch. 493, § 23, so as to remove a provision providing for the repeal of Laws of 1982, ch. 493 effective June 30, 1990.

Amendment Notes —

The 1999 amendment added “Secondary” in (2)(f); added “and ” in (2)(m); deleted former (2)(n); and redesignated former (2)(o) as (2)(n).

The 2014 amendment added the last sentence in (1).

Cross References —

Contracts and cooperation between the division of vocational technical education of the state department of education and the division of job development and training of the office of the governor, see §7-1-363.

State personnel board generally, see §25-9-109 et seq.

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

General duties of state superintendent, see §37-3-11.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 84.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 188, 191–203.

§ 37-3-27. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 43, eff from and after July 1, 1984.

[Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-27 provided for duties of the director of division of vocational rehabilitation. For present similar provisions, see §37-3-25.

§ 37-3-29. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 17, eff from and after July 1, 1986 (became law on April 4, 1986, without Governor’s signature).

[Codes, 1942, § 6245-08; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 8; Laws, 1948, ch. 294, § 1; Laws, 1964, ch. 383; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 4; Laws, 1970, ch. 363, § 3]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-29 provided for duties of the director of division of junior colleges.

§ 37-3-31. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 43, eff from and after July 1, 1984.

[Codes, 1942, § 6245-09; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 9]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-31 assigned additional services to existing divisions and fixed responsibility for proper administration of department of education in the superintendent of public education.

§§ 37-3-33 through 37-3-37. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 17, eff from and after July 1, 1986 (became law on April 4, 1986, without Governor’s signature).

§37-3-33. [Codes, 1942, § 6248-131; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 1]

§37-3-35. [Codes, 1942, § 6248-132; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 2]

§37-3-37. [Codes, 1942, § 6248-133; Laws, 1968, ch. 388, § 3; Laws, 1984, ch. 488, § 198]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-33 provided for general functions of the division of junior colleges, qualifications of director, and selection of personnel.

Former §37-3-35 provided for principal functions of the division of junior colleges.

Former §37-3-37 provided for specific responsibilities of the director of division of junior colleges.

§ 37-3-39. Custody and disbursement of funds of department.

The state treasurer is hereby designated and appointed custodian of all funds made available to the state department of education other than such funds as may be appropriated by the legislature, and he is hereby authorized to receive and to provide for the proper custody of the same. All such funds shall be disbursed by the treasurer on warrants drawn therefor by the state auditor on requisitions of the state superintendent of public education.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6245-10; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 10.

Editor’s Notes —

Section 7-7-2 provides that the words “State Auditor of Public Accounts,” “State Auditor” and “Auditor” appearing in the laws of this state in connection with the performance of Auditor’s functions shall mean the State Fiscal Officer whenever they appear.

Section 27-104-6 provides that wherever the term “State Fiscal Officer” appears in any law it shall mean “Executive Director of the Department of Finance and Administration.”

Cross References —

Designation of state treasurer as sole agent to receive and disburse certain funds to be expended under the direction of state officials or agencies for benefit of state, see §7-9-23.

General duties of state superintendent of education, see §37-3-11.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 120, 122.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 9 et seq.

§ 37-3-41. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1983, ch. 469, § 10, eff from and after July 1, 1983.

[Codes, 1930, § 6558; 1942, § 6245-12; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws, 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1946, ch. 297, § 12]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-41 prohibited interests of officers and members of department in any outside author, publisher, bookseller, or seller of school apparatus or furniture.

§ 37-3-43. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 500, § 55, eff from and after July 1, 1986.

[Laws, 1975, ch. 310, § 1]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-43 set forth the legislature’s declaration of purpose with respect to a state program of educational accountability and assessment of performance. For present similar provisions, see §37-3-46.

§ 37-3-46. Assistance to certain local schools or school districts to establish program of educational accountability and assessment of performance; personnel appraisal and compensation system for school employees; programs to prevent dropouts.

  1. The State Department of Education, in regard to any school within a school district or any school district not meeting adequate performance of accreditation standards, as defined by the State Board of Education, shall, subject to appropriation:
    1. Provide to local school districts, or specific schools within those districts, financial, training and other assistance to implement and maintain a state program of educational accountability and assessment of performance.
    2. Provide to local school districts, or specific schools within those districts, technical assistance and training in the development, implementation and administration of a personnel appraisal and compensation system for all school employees.
    3. Provide to local school districts, or specific schools within those districts, technical assistance in the development, implementation and administration of programs designed to keep children in school voluntarily and to prevent dropouts.
  2. Schools or school districts receiving assistance from the State Department of Education as outlined in subsection (1) of this section shall be required to implement any training, programs, and any other requirements as specified by the State Superintendent of Public Education.

HISTORY: Laws, 1982, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 8; Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 5; Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 4; Laws, 2009, ch. 445, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 516, § 6; Laws, 2010, ch. 488, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 43, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 26, 2009), amended this section. Section 4 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), and Section 6 of ch. 516, Laws of 2009, effective from and after passage (approved April 8, 2009), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1990, Chapter 588, § 19, amended this section effective July 1, 1990, provided that the Legislature by concurrent resolution adopted by the House and Senate in session prior to July 1, 1990, declared that sufficient funds were dedicated and made available for the implementation of Chapter 588. However, funds, were not made available by the Legislature prior to July 1, 1990, and by direction of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Mississippi, the amendatory provisions have not implemented. The text of the amendment can be found in the Advance Sheet Acts of the 1990 Legislative Session published by the Secretary of State’s Office, Jackson, Mississippi.

At the direction of the co-counsel for the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation, a statutory reference in (2) was changed by substituting “subsection (1) of this section” for “Section 37-3-46(1).”

Laws of 2009, ch. 516 § 1 provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the “Children First Act of 2009.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2006 amendment rewrote the introductory paragraph; and deleted the former last sentence in (b), which read: “The state board of education shall report to the legislature on January 5, 1986, with recommendations based upon the personnel appraisal and compensation system developed under this subsection.”

The first 2009 amendment (ch 345), reenacted this section without change.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 445) reenacted and amended the section by adding (2), adding the subsection designation “(1),” and in the introductory language of (1), substituting “adequate performance of accreditation standards” for “Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards,” adding “subject to appropriation” at the end, and making a minor stylistic change.

The third 2009 amendment (ch. 516), added (2); added the subsection designation “(1)”; and in the introductory language of (1), substituted “adequate performance of accreditation standards” for “Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards,” added “subject to appropriation” at the end, and made a minor stylistic change.

The 2010 amendment, in the introductory paragraph in (1), substituted “school or school district” for “district”; in (1)(a) through (1)(c), inserted “schools or”; and in (2), substituted “Schools or school districts” for “districts.”

The 2013 amendment, in (1), substituted “school within a school district or any school district” for “school or school district”; and substituted “school districts, or specific schools within those districts” for “schools or school districts” in (1)(a) through (c).

Cross References —

State department of education providing an instructional program and management system to local school districts as part of the state program of educational accountability and assessment of performance as prescribed in this section, see §37-3-49.

Exemption from the provisions of this section for school districts meeting Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards, see §37-17-12.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Law Reviews.

The Legal Status of Functional Literacy Examinations. 58 Miss. L. J. 305, Fall 1988.

§ 37-3-47. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 500, § 55, eff from and after July 1, 1986.

[Laws, 1975, ch. 310, § 3]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-47 set forth the duties of school boards with respect to a state program of educational accountability and assessment of performance.

§ 37-3-48. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1989, ch. 585, § 4, eff April 25, 1989 (became law without the Governor’s signature).

[Laws, 1986, ch. 500, § 54]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-48 provided guidelines and procedures for managing an instructional program in the public schools.

§ 37-3-49. Adoption by school district of instructional program and management system; paperwork reduction; exemption of certain district.

  1. The State Department of Education shall provide an instructional program and establish guidelines and procedures for managing such program in the public schools within the school districts throughout the state as part of the State Program of Educational Accountability and Assessment of Performance as prescribed in Section 37-3-46. Public school districts may (a) elect to adopt the instructional program and management system provided by the State Department of Education, or (b) elect to adopt an instructional program and management system which meets or exceeds criteria established by the State Department of Education for such. This provision shall begin with the courses taught in Grades K-8 which contain skills tested through the Mississippi Basic Skills Assessment Program and shall proceed through all secondary school courses mandated for graduation and all secondary school courses in the Mississippi end-of-course testing program. Other state core objectives must be included in the district’s instructional program as they are provided by the State Department of Education along with instructional practices, resources, evaluation items and management procedures. Districts are encouraged to adapt this program and accompanying procedures to all other instructional areas. The department shall provide that such program and guidelines, or a program and guidelines developed by a local school district which incorporates the core objectives from the curriculum structure are enforced through the performance-based accreditation system. It is the intent of the Legislature that every effort be made to protect the instructional time in the classroom and reduce the amount of paperwork which must be completed by teachers. The State Department of Education shall take steps to insure that school districts properly use staff development time to work on the districts’ instructional management plans.
  2. The State Department of Education shall provide such instructional program and management guidelines which shall require for every public school district that:
    1. All courses taught in Grades K-8 which contain skills which are tested through the Mississippi Basic Skills Assessment Program, all secondary school courses mandated for graduation, and all courses in the end-of-course testing program shall include the State Department of Education’s written list of learning objectives.
    2. The local school board must adopt the objectives that will form the core curriculum which will be systematically delivered throughout the district.
    3. The set of objectives provided by the State Department of Education must be accompanied by suggested instructional practices and resources that would help teachers organize instruction so as to promote student learning of the objectives. Objectives added by the school district must also be accompanied by suggested instructional practices and resources that would help teachers organize instruction. The instructional practices and resources that are identified are to be used as suggestions and not as requirements that teachers must follow. The goal of the program is to have students to achieve the desired objective and not to limit teachers in the way they teach.
    4. Standards for student performance must be established for each core objective in the local program and those standards establish the district’s definition of mastery for each objective.
    5. There shall be an annual review of student performance in the instructional program against locally established standards. When weaknesses exist in the local instructional program, the district shall take action to improve student performance.
  3. The State Board of Education and the board of trustees of each school district shall adopt policies to limit and reduce the number and length of written reports that classroom teachers are required to prepare.
  4. This section shall not be construed to limit teachers from using their own professional skills to help students master instructional objectives, nor shall it be construed as a call for more detailed or complex lesson plans or any increase in testing at the local school district level.
  5. Districts meeting the highest levels of accreditation standards, as defined by the State Board of Education, shall be exempted from the provisions of subsection (2) of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1988, ch. 487, § 14; Laws, 1991, ch. 423, § 1; Laws, 1992, ch. 519, § 4; Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 6; reenacted without changee, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 5; reenacted and amended, Laws, 2009, ch. 445, § 4; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 44, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 4 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 26, 2009), amended this section. Section 5 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 4 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Amendment Notes —

The 2006 amendment rewrote (5).

The first 2009 amendment (ch. 345) reenacted this section without change.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 445) reenacted and amended the section by substituting “the highest levels of” for “Level 4 or 5” in (5).

The 2013 amendment inserted “within the school districts throughout the state” preceding “as part of the State Program of Educational” in the first sentence of (1).

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

State Department of Education authorized to establish office of career education, see §37-13-58.

Exemption from the provisions of subsection (2) of this section for school districts meeting Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards, see §37-17-12.

§ 37-3-51. Notification of Department of Education of conviction of licensed person of certain felonies or sex offenses.

  1. Upon the conviction of any licensed personnel, as defined in Section 37-9-1, employed by a public school district or any person employed by a charter or private elementary or secondary school in a position that requires licensure in the public school districts, of any felony, or of a sex offense as defined in subsection (2) of this section, the district attorney or other prosecuting attorney shall identify those defendants for the circuit clerk. Each circuit clerk shall provide the State Department of Education with notice of the conviction of any such personnel of a felony or a sex offense. In addition, if the convicted person is an employee of a charter school, the circuit clerk must provide the same notice to the Mississippi Charter School Authorizer Board.
  2. “Sex offense” shall mean any of the following offenses:
    1. Section 97-3-65, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to the carnal knowledge of a child under fourteen (14) years of age;
    2. Section 97-3-95, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to sexual battery;
    3. Section 97-5-21, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to seduction of a child under age eighteen (18);
    4. Section 97-5-23, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to the touching of a child for lustful purposes;
    5. Section 97-5-27, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to the dissemination of sexually oriented material to children;
    6. Section 97-5-33, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to the exploitation of children;
    7. Section 97-5-41, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to the carnal knowledge of a stepchild, adopted child, or child of a cohabitating partner;
    8. Section 97-29-59, Mississippi Code of 1972, relating to unnatural intercourse; or
    9. Any other offense committed in another jurisdiction which, if committed in this state, would be deemed to be such a crime without regard to its designation elsewhere.
  3. In addition, the State Department of Education is considered to be the employer of such personnel for purposes of requesting criminal record background checks.

HISTORY: Laws, 1991, ch. 448, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 499, § 24; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 45, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Editor’s Notes —

Section97-5-21 referred to in (2)(c) was repealed by Laws of 1998, ch. 549, § 7, eff from and after July 1, 1998. See now §§97-3-65, 97-3-95, 97–3–101, and 97-5-23.

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment substituted “a criminal record background checks” for “sex offense criminal history record information pursuant to Sections 45-31-1 through 45-31-19” in (3).

The 2013 amendment in (1), substituted “37-9-1, employed by a public school district or any person employed by a charter or private elementary or secondary school in a position that requires licensure in the public school districts” for “37-19-7, employed by a public or private elementary or secondary school” in the first sentence; and added the last sentence; and made a minor stylistic change in (3).

Cross References —

Mississippi Charter School Authorizer Board, generally, see §37-28-1 et seq.

Applicability of this section to charter schools, see §37-28-45.

Mississippi Sex Offenders Registration Law, see §45-33-21 et seq.

§ 37-3-53. “Mississippi Report Card” on performance of students, public schools and charter schools.

    1. Each school year, the State Board of Education, acting through the Office of Educational Accountability, shall develop a public school reporting system, or “Mississippi Report Card,” on the performance of students and public schools, including charter schools, at the local, district and state level. In developing the report card, the Office of Educational Accountability shall collect school, district and state level student achievement data in the appropriate grades as designated by the State Board of Education in all core subjects, and compare the data with national standards to identify students’ strengths and weaknesses. The Mississippi Report Card shall provide more than reports to parents on the level at which their children are performing; the report shall provide clear and comparable public information on the level at which schools, school districts and the state public education system are performing. The Office of Educational Accountability shall encourage local school districts and the general public to use Mississippi Report Card information along with local individual student data to assess the quality of instructional programs and the performance of schools and to plan and implement programs of instructional improvement.
    2. Beginning with the 1998-1999 school year, the Mississippi Report Card shall include information, as compiled by the Office of Compulsory School Attendance Enforcement, which demonstrates clearly the absenteeism and dropout rates in each school district, charter school and the state as a whole and whether those rates reflect a positive or negative change from the same information as reported in the previous year’s Mississippi Report Card.
    3. Each local school district shall be required to develop and publish an annual report as prescribed by the State Board of Education. By November 1 of each year, as prescribed by the State Board of Education, the report shall be published in a newspaper having general circulation in the county and posted on the school district’s website in a printable format. The public notice shall include information on the report’s availability on the district’s website, with the website address, and the location(s) in the school district where a copy of the report can be obtained.
  1. The State Department of Education may benefit from the use of performance data from the Mississippi Report Card in making evaluations under Section 37-19-9.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 14; Laws, 1994, ch. 581, § 9; Laws, 1998, ch. 566, § 8; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 4; Laws, 2013, ch. 494, § 5; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 46, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 5 of ch. 494, Laws of 2013, effective from and after July 1, 2013 (approved April 18, 2013), amended this section. Section 46 of ch. 497, Laws of 2013, effective from and after July 1, 2013 (approved April 17, 2013), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments, pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the August 1, 2013, meeting of the Joint Committee.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Laws of 2013, ch. 494, § 1, provide:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi Education Works Program.’ ”

Chapter 494, Laws of 2013, amended Sections 37-3-53, 37-16-7, 37-18-1 and 37-19-7 and enacted Sections 37-19-9 and 37-106-37.

Amendment Notes —

The 2011 amendment added the last paragraph.

The 2013 amendment (ch. 494), inserted subsection designations and added (2).

The 2013 amendment (ch. 497), substituted “students and public schools, ‘including charter schools” for “students and schools” in the first sentence of the first paragraph; substituted “charter schools and the state ‘as a whole” for “and the state” in the first sentence of the second paragraph.

Cross References —

State agencies and public officials providing information about the agency or office to the public on a website are required to regularly review and update that information, see §25-1-117.

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Applicability of provisions of this section to charter schools, see §37-28-45.

Establishment of Office of Educational Accountability, see §37-151-9.

§ 37-3-55. Repealed.

Repealed by its own terms by Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 16, eff from and after July 1, 1997.

[Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 16, eff from and after July 1, 1992, and shall stand repealed from and after July 1, 1997]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-55 related to a student advancement pilot program for requiring uniform school terms for Grades 1 through 8.

§ 37-3-57. Repealed.

Repealed by its own terms by Laws, 1994, ch. 381, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1996.

[Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 17; Laws, 1994, ch. 381, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1996]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-57 related to pilot program for removing grade level designations for Grades 1 through 3.

§ 37-3-59. Summer kindergarten program for Grade 1 readiness; summer developmental program for Grades 1 through Grade 8.

  1. The school boards of all school districts are authorized to establish, maintain and operate, in connection with the kindergarten program of said district, a summer kindergarten program for Grade 1 readiness for those pupils making unsatisfactory progress during the regular kindergarten session. Said summer kindergarten program may be held within such school district or may be operated by two (2) or more adjacent school districts, or may be operated by a community/junior college or by a public or private university or college, pursuant to a contract approved by the State Board of Education. Transportation for students attending the summer kindergarten program shall be the responsibility of the local school district. The expense of establishing, maintaining and operating such summer kindergarten program may be paid from funds contributed or otherwise made available to the school district for such purpose from state appropriation, or otherwise, or from local district maintenance funds.
  2. The school boards of all school districts are authorized to establish, maintain and operate a summer developmental program for those students making unsatisfactory progress in Grades 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6, during the first two (2) semesters. Such summer programs shall be open to those students who are not required to attend summer classes, but have had difficulty in the first two (2) trimesters, and shall be open to those students who desire enrichment. Said summer developmental programs may be held within such school district or may be operated by two (2) or more adjacent school districts, or may be operated by a community/junior college or by a public or private university or college, pursuant to a contract approved by the State Board of Education. Transportation for students required to attend the summer program for Grades 1-6 shall be the responsibility of the local school district(s). The expense of establishing, maintaining and operating such summer program may be paid from funds contributed or made available to the school district for such purpose from state appropriation, or otherwise, or from local district maintenance funds.
  3. The school boards of all school districts are authorized to establish, maintain and operate a summer developmental program for those students making unsatisfactory progress in core curriculum courses in Grades 7 and 8, during the preceding school year. Said summer developmental programs may be held within such school district or may be operated by two (2) or more adjacent school districts, or may be operated by a community/junior college or by a public or private university or college, pursuant to a contract approved by the State Board of Education. Transportation for students required to attend the summer program for Grades 7 and 8 shall be the responsibility of the local school district. The expense of establishing, maintaining and operating such summer program may be paid from funds contributed or made available to the school district for such purpose from state appropriation, or otherwise, or from local district maintenance funds.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 18, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-61. Alliance for Families programs; authorization; objectives.

The State Board of Education may provide for the establishment of an Alliance for Families program for the purpose of mobilizing public and parental support for education and to strengthen communication between the school, student and parents. The program’s goal shall be to increase student success in Mississippi public school districts, K-12, by generating focused, effective parent involvement. The objectives of the program shall be as follows:

To engage parents in supporting the schools and their children’s education.

To implement effective home-school communication systems which allow parents to be kept well informed about the school and their children’s progress.

To train school administrators on successful strategies for involving parents both at home and at school and in developing community support for the schools.

To train teachers on successful strategies for communicating with parents and teaching parents to reinforce skills being learned at school.

To promote reading as the key curricular activity for parental focus.

To involve the business, medical and religious communities in supporting the schools through direct assistance, and to develop positive public relations for the schools in the community.

Publication of a resource manual to assist schools and school districts in implementation of Alliance for Families program.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 19; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 47, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment substituted “public school districts” for “public schools” in the first paragraph.

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

§ 37-3-63. Alliance for Families program; procedure for establishment.

The procedure for establishing an Alliance for Families program in a district shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following:

A district assessment which shall include an assessment of school personnel, levels of parent and community support, and the student population; research on school district demographics, attitudes, test scores and the need for parent involvement. Contact shall be made with key persons and school officials in each district and meetings held.

A recommendation for a district Alliance for Families program shall be developed which responds to the school district’s needs. The plan shall include the district’s goals and objectives for implementation of its Alliance for Families program.

A project coordinator shall be assigned to school districts based on student population and need, except that each school district shall have one (1) assigned coordinator. The role of the district coordinator shall be to provide support for the project and to ensure continuity of the program. Included in the district coordinator’s responsibilities shall be visits to school sites, and meetings with principals, teachers and parents to offer assistance with implementation of the program.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 20, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-65. Alliance for Families program; purpose.

It shall be the purpose of the Alliance for Families program to provide on a district level:

Enhanced communication with participating principals and teachers;

A parent involvement plan tailored to each school’s needs;

Assistance with the support and strategies necessary for successful program implementation;

Support and assistance in other areas as needed to enhance school-wide effectiveness.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 21, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-67. Alliance for Families program; components.

Components of the Alliance for Families program shall include, but shall not be limited to:

A signed parent pledge to assist with identification of ways to improve their child’s performance;

Folder/notebook that is sent home periodically, but not less than once per month, for parent’s signature;

Emphasis on “back to school night” or other family-oriented programs is key parent education events and as a beginning of establishing a partnership with the home;

Reading focus programs which require home reading programs;

Teacher, principal and parent training on how to participate most effectively in the program;

Newsletters to parents on school programs, classroom curriculum, and how parents can reinforce what their child is learning;

Home survey to assess parents’ perceptions about communication, school programs and learning strategies for the home;

Parent/teacher conferences which involve training parents and teachers in effective conferencing strategies and cooperative methods to achieve student success.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 22, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-69. Alliance for Families program; measurement of success.

The success of the Alliance for Families program shall be measured in terms of progress on test scores, increase in participation of school events, increase in numbers of persons/school districts participating in the program, and other appropriate measures.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 23, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-71. Alliance for Families program; participation by students and school districts; evaluation and report by State Board of Education.

All students in all school districts are eligible to participate in the Alliance for Families program. The number of school districts that may participate shall be determined by the amount of funding. The State Board of Education shall evaluate the Alliance for Families program in participating school districts and shall report to the Legislature and the Governor on or before August 1, 1993, identifying exemplary programs and making recommendations regarding methods and criteria for funding such programs.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 24, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

Program specified in this section to be funded by state; local funding of program not exempt from tax increase limitations; and program not mandatory, see §37-3-77.

§ 37-3-73. Rewarding of parents for involvement in school improvement; parent of year awards.

The State Board of Education shall establish an awards program to reward parents for becoming involved in school improvement efforts. A process shall be established which shall include, but not be limited to, the designation of a parent of the year in every school district in the state and the designation of one (1) “Parent of the Year” statewide.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 25, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

§ 37-3-75. Awards for exemplary performing public schools and school programs.

The State Board of Education shall establish and design a program of awards for exemplary performing public schools. The purpose of the awards program shall be to stimulate innovation and improvement in student achievement through the provision of awards to schools.

The board shall establish criteria and guidelines for making awards to exemplary performing public schools.

The board, in conjunction with the Governor, shall reward schools for exemplary performance and bring best practices to the attention of other schools. The awards shall include public recognition by the board and the Governor and the awarding of plaques, certificates, etc. for schools that perform well. The board shall have flexibility to recognize not only entire schools but also to recognize exemplary programs within a school.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 26, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

§ 37-3-77. State funding of programs provided for in §§ 37-3-55 through 37-3-71; expenditure of local funds for specified programs; implementation of specified programs deemed discretionary.

  1. It is the intention of the Legislature that local school districts shall bear no cost of implementing any of the provisions of this act contained in Sections 37-3-55 through 37-3-71 [See Editor’s Note below]. Any monetary mandates resulting from the passage of these sections shall be contingent solely upon full funding by the State of Mississippi.
  2. In the event the school board of any school district shall choose, in its discretion, to expend local funds for the implementation of Sections 37-3-55 through 37-3-71, it is the intent of the Legislature that these expenditures shall not be considered funds expended for the purpose of implementing a “new program” mandated by the Legislature and any such funds shall not be generated from any taxes levied as an exemption from the tax increase limitation provisions prescribed in Sections 27-39-321 and 37-57-107.
  3. No state officer or state agency, authorized to issue official opinions interpreting the laws of this state, shall issue any opinions stating that the educational programs prescribed under the provisions of Sections 37-3-55 through 37-3-71, are mandatory. It is the intent of the Legislature in enacting such measures that these educational programs shall be discretionary as decided by local school boards.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 29, eff from and after July 1, 1992.

Editor’s Notes —

Section 37-3-55 referred to in this section was repealed by Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 16, effective from and after July 1, 1997.

Section 37-3-57, referred to in this section, was repealed by Laws of 1994, ch. 381, § 1, effective from and after July 1, 1996.

Reference to “this act” in subsection (1) of this section refers to Laws of 1992, ch. 419. For a complete list of code sections affected by Laws of 1992, ch. 419, see the Statutory Tables Volume, Table B, Acts of Legislature for 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

§ 37-3-79. Curriculum Coordinator of Music and Art Education.

The State Department of Education shall employ a Curriculum Coordinator of Music and Art Education who holds certification as a music and/or art teacher. The supervisor’s responsibilities shall include the oversight of the elementary music/art programs as well as secondary programs.

HISTORY: Laws, 1994, ch. 409, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1994.

§ 37-3-81. School Safety Center.

The Department of Education, using only existing staff and resources, shall establish and maintain a School Safety Center, which shall operate a statewide information clearinghouse that: (a) provides assistance to school districts and communities during school crises; and (b) provides technical assistance, training and current resources to public school officials and parents who need assistance in researching, developing and implementing school safety plans and in maintaining a safe school environment. However, no monies from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families grant may be used for the School Safety Center.

HISTORY: Laws, 1994, ch. 607, § 10; Laws, 2001, ch. 486, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2001.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2001, ch. 486, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2001.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2001 amendment rewrote the section.

Cross References —

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Program, see §43-17-1 et seq.

§ 37-3-82. Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools grant program established; purpose; use of funds.

  1. There is hereby established the Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools (MCOPS) grant program in the State Department of Education to provide funding, pursuant to specific appropriation by the Legislature therefor, to assist law enforcement agencies in providing additional School Resource Officers to engage in community policing in and around primary and secondary schools. The MCOPS program shall authorize the State Department of Education to make grants to increase deployment of law enforcement officers in order (a) to increase or enhance community policing in this state, (b) that trained, sworn enforcement officers assigned to schools play an integral part in the development and/or enhancement of a comprehensive school safety plan, and (c) that the presence of these officers shall provide schools with a direct link to local law enforcement agencies.
  2. The MCOPS program shall meet the following requirements and standards:
    1. This program shall provide an incentive for law enforcement agencies to build collaborative partnerships with the school community and to use community policing efforts to combat school violence and implement educational programs to improve student and school safety.
    2. The additional School Resource Officers must devote at least seventy-five percent (75%) of their time to work in and around primary and secondary schools, in addition to the time that School Resource Officers are devoting in the absence of the MCOPS in Schools grant.
    3. Beginning with the 2019-2020 school year, the MCOPS in Schools program shall provide a minimum state contribution of up to Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000.00) per officer position over the one-year grant period, to be matched from local funds on a 50/50 matching basis. Officers paid with MCOPS funds may be employed by the local law enforcement agency or by the local school district. MCOPS funds may be used to pay for entry-level salaries and benefits of newly trained additional School Resource Officers and may be used to pay the salaries and benefits of School Resource Officers employed prior to July 1, 2013. All jurisdictions that apply must demonstrate that they have primary law enforcement authority over the school(s) identified in their application and demonstrate their inability to implement this project without state assistance. Schools or law enforcement agencies may not reduce its overall federal, state, locally funded level of sworn officers (including other School Resource Officers or other sworn officers assigned to the schools) as a result of applying for or receiving MCOPS in Schools grant funding. MCOPS in Schools funding may be used to rehire sworn officers previously employed who have been laid off for financial reasons unrelated to the availability of the MCOPS in Schools grant, but must obtain prior written approval from the State Department of Education. MCOPS in Schools funding may be used to train school resource officers. In order to be eligible for such program, each local school board desiring to participate shall apply to the State Department of Education by May 31 before the beginning of the applicable fiscal year on forms provided by the department. The State Department of Education shall determine by July 1 of each succeeding year which local school districts have submitted approved applications for School Resource Officer funding.
    4. School Resource Officers (SROs) may serve in a variety of roles, including, but not limited to, that of a law enforcement officer/safety specialist, law-related educator, and problem-solver/community liaison. These officers may teach programs such as crime prevention, substance abuse prevention, and gang resistance as well as monitor and assist troubled students through mentoring programs. The School Resource Officer(s) may also identify physical changes in the environment that may reduce crime in and around the schools, as well as assist in developing school policies which address criminal activity and school safety. The application must also include a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), signed by the law enforcement executive and the appropriate school official(s), to document the roles and responsibilities to be undertaken by the law enforcement agency and the educational school partner(s) through this collaborative effort. The application must also include a Narrative Addendum to document that the School Resource Officer(s) will be assigned to work in and around primary or secondary schools and provide supporting documentation in the following areas: problem identification and justification, community policing strategies to be used by the officers, quality and level of commitment to the effort, and the link to community policing.
    5. All agencies receiving awards through the MCOPS in Schools program are required to send the School Resource Officer position(s) funded by this grant, to the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers’ Training Academy where they shall be required to participate in training through the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Program at the academy, with the cost to be defrayed from the MCOPS program. The MCOPS Office of the State Department of Education will reimburse grantees for training, per diem, travel, and lodging costs for attendance of required participants up to a maximum of One Thousand Two Hundred Dollars ($1,200.00) per person attending. Applicants receiving an MCOPS in Schools grant, will receive additional training information following notification of the grant award. The MCOPS in Schools training requirement must be completed prior to the end of twelve-month grant funding for officer positions.
  3. The State Department of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations prescribing procedures for the application, expenditure requirements and the administration of the Mississippi Community Oriented Policing Services in Schools (MCOPS) program established in this section, and shall make a report on the implementation of the MCOPS program with any recommendations to the 2020 Regular Session of the Legislature.

HISTORY: Laws, 2013, ch. 546, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2013; Laws, 2019, ch. 427, § 7, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor's Note —

Laws of 2019, ch. 427, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019.’”

Amendment Notes —

The 2019 amendment, in (2)(c), inserted “Beginning with the 2019-2020 school year” and substituted “minimum state contribution” for “maximum state contribution” in the first sentence and added the last three sentences of (c), and redesignated former (f) and (g) as (d) and (e); and substituted “2020 Regular Session of the Legislature” for “2014 Regular Session of the Legislature” at the end of (3).

§ 37-3-82.1. Schools unable to meet financial requirements for participation in MCOPS program authorized to develop alternative plans for student security.

In the event that a public school district is unable to participate in the MCOPS program due to the district’s inability to meet the necessary financial requirements of the local fund match, the local school board of that school district may develop a plan for the security of its students, faculty and administration, which must be approved by the State Board of Education and the Mississippi Department of Public Safety prior to its implementation. The local school board may still apply for grants under the MCOPS program for training of security personnel employed by the school district.

HISTORY: Laws, 2013, ch. 546, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

§ 37-3-83. School Safety Grant Program; implementation of “Erin’s Law Awareness” policy addressing sexual abuse of children; pilot program utilizing evidence-based curriculum to provide children stress and anxiety management skills; biennial refresher training on mental health and suicide prevention for all school employees.

  1. There is established within the State Department of Education, using only existing staff and resources, a School Safety Grant Program, available to all eligible public school districts, to assist in financing programs to provide school safety. However, no monies from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families grant may be used for the School Safety Grant Program.
  2. The school board of each school district, with the assistance of the State Department of Education School Safety Center, shall adopt a comprehensive local school district school safety plan and shall update the plan on an annual basis.
  3. Subject to the extent of appropriations available, the School Safety Grant Program shall offer any of the following specific preventive services, and other additional services appropriate to the most current school district school safety plan:
    1. Metal detectors;
    2. Video surveillance cameras, communications equipment and monitoring equipment for classrooms, school buildings, school grounds and school buses;
    3. Crisis management/action teams responding to school violence;
    4. Violence prevention training, conflict resolution training, behavioral stress training and other appropriate training designated by the State Department of Education for faculty and staff; and
    5. School safety personnel.
  4. Each local school district of this state may annually apply for school safety grant funds subject to appropriations by the Legislature. School safety grants shall include a base grant amount plus an additional amount per student in average daily attendance in the school or school district. The base grant amount and amount per student shall be determined by the State Board of Education, subject to specific appropriation therefor by the Legislature. In order to be eligible for such program, each local school board desiring to participate shall apply to the State Department of Education by May 31 before the beginning of the applicable fiscal year on forms provided by the department, and shall be required to establish a local School Safety Task Force to involve members of the community in the school safety effort. The State Department of Education shall determine by July 1 of each succeeding year which local school districts have submitted approved applications for school safety grants.
  5. As part of the School Safety Grant Program, the State Department of Education may conduct a pilot program to research the feasibility of using video camera equipment in the classroom to address the following:
    1. Determine if video cameras in the classroom reduce student disciplinary problems;
    2. Enable teachers to present clear and convincing evidence of a student’s disruptive behavior to the student, the principal, the superintendent and the student’s parents; and
    3. Enable teachers to review teaching performance and receive diagnostic feedback for developmental purposes.
  6. Any local school district may use audio/visual-monitoring equipment in classrooms, hallways, buildings, grounds and buses for the purpose of monitoring school disciplinary problems.
  7. As a component of the comprehensive local school district school safety plan required under subsection (2) of this section, the school board of a school district may adopt and implement a policy addressing sexual abuse of children, to be known as “Erin’s Law Awareness.” Any policy adopted under this subsection may include or address, but need not be limited to, the following:
    1. Methods for increasing teacher, student and parental awareness of issues regarding sexual abuse of children, including knowledge of likely warning signs indicating that a child may be a victim of sexual abuse;
    2. Educational information for parents or guardians, which may be included in the school handbook, on the warning signs of a child being abused, along with any needed assistance, referral or resource information;
    3. Training for school personnel on child sexual abuse;
    4. Age-appropriate curriculum for students in prekindergarten through fifth grade;
    5. Actions that a child who is a victim of sexual abuse should take to obtain assistance and intervention;
    6. Counseling and resources available for students affected by sexual abuse; and
    7. Emotional and educational support for a child who has been abused to enable the child to be successful in school.
  8. As part of the school safety grant program, the State Department of Education shall establish three (3) pilot programs in six (6) school districts utilizing an evidence-based curriculum to provide students in Grades K-5 with skills to manage stress and anxiety in order for them to be better equipped to handle challenges in a healthy way and build resiliency. The Mississippi Department of Mental Health shall be responsible for the selection of the content of the evidence-based curriculum. The results of this pilot program shall be measured and reported, and such results shall be used in consideration of the implementation of this curriculum statewide.
  9. As a component of the comprehensive local school district safety plan required under subsection (2) of this section, beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, the State Department of Education shall require local school districts to conduct, every two (2) years, refresher training on mental health and suicide prevention for all school employees and personnel, including all cafeteria workers, custodians, teachers and administrators. The Mississippi Department of Mental Health shall be responsible for the development and/or selection of the content of the training, which training shall be provided at no cost to school employees. School districts shall report completion of the training to the State Department of Education.

HISTORY: Laws, 1994, ch. 607, § 11; Laws, 1997, ch. 525, § 1; Laws, 2001, ch. 486, § 3; Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 10; Laws, 2014, ch. 491, § 11, eff from and after passage (approved April 15, 2014); Laws, 2019, ch. 427, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2001, ch. 486, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2001.’ ”

Laws of 2019, ch. 427, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2001 amendment rewrote the section.

The 2011 amendment deleted former (7), which read: “The State Department of Education shall report annually to the Chairmen of the Education Committees in the House of Representatives and Senate on the operation of the School Safety Center and the School Safety Grant Program, along with any recommendations for expansion or revision of the program.”

The 2014 amendment added (7).

The 2019 amendment inserted “behavioral stress training” in (3)(d); and added (8) and (9).

Cross References —

School Safety Center established, see §37-3-81.

Exemption of certain school safety plan documents containing preventive services listed in this section from Mississippi Public Records Act of 1983, see §37-11-51.

§ 37-3-84. Confiscation of illegal firearms; reward.

  1. Each school district in the state may pay a reward not exceeding Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) to any person who provides information that leads to the confiscation by the school district or a law enforcement agency of any illegal firearm on public school property.
  2. Each school district shall establish a policy necessary to protect the confidentiality of any person who provides such information leading to the confiscation of an illegal firearm under this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1997, ch. 525, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved April 10, 1997).

§ 37-3-85. After-school mentoring programs.

  1. The Legislature finds that:
    1. Students who are serious behavior problems in school are at risk of becoming juvenile and adult offenders;
    2. Growing numbers of children live in conditions that place them at risk of school failure;
    3. The provision of school and support services to these children and their families by public and nonprofit agencies is fragmented and does not prepare these children to learn effectively and have a successful school experience;
    4. The lack of collaboration among schools, families, local agencies and other groups involved in family support and youth development activities results in the inefficient and ineffective use of resources to meet the needs of these children;
    5. Schools are dedicating an increasing amount of their time and resources to responding to disruptive and violent behavior rather than fulfilling their mission to challenge with high expectations each child to learn, to achieve and to fulfill his or her potential;
    6. Responding to the needs of students who are at risk of school failure and providing for a safe and secure learning environment are cost-effective because it enables the state to substitute preventive measures for expensive crisis intervention; and
    7. Differing local needs and local resources necessitate the development of locally generated, community-based plans that coordinate and leverage existing resources, not the imposition of uniform and inflexible, state-mandated plans.
  2. There is established within the State Department of Education the Support Our Students (S.O.S.) program. The purpose of the program is to award grants to neighborhood- and community-based organizations to establish local S.O.S. programs that provide high quality after-school mentoring activities for school-aged children and provide for comprehensive, collaborative delivery of mentoring services by public and nonpublic agencies to these children. These services shall be designed to enrich and make a positive impact on the lives of school-aged children. These after-school activities may include activities after the regular school day and activities on days that students are not required to attend school.
  3. The goals of the S.O.S. program are to:
    1. Reduce juvenile crime in local communities served by the program;
    2. Recruit community volunteers to provide positive adult role models for school-aged children and to help supervise after-school activities;
    3. Reduce the number of students who are unsupervised after school, otherwise known as “latchkey” children;
    4. Improve the academic performance of students participating in the program;
    5. Meet the physical, intellectual, emotional and social needs of students participating in the program and improve their attitudes and behavior; and
    6. Improve coordination of existing resources and enhance collaboration so as to provide services to school-aged children effectively and efficiently.
  4. As used in this section, “school-aged children” means children enrolled in kindergarten through the ninth grade.
  5. The State Department of Education shall develop and implement the Support Our Students (S.O.S.) program. The department shall:
    1. Sponsor a statewide conference each year for teams of interested representatives to provide background information and assistance regarding all aspects of the program;
    2. Disseminate information regarding the program to interested neighborhood and community groups;
    3. Develop and disseminate a request for applications to establish local S.O.S. programs;
    4. Provide initial technical assistance to grant applicants and ongoing technical assistance as grants are implemented;
    5. Administer funds appropriated by the Legislature;
    6. Monitor the grants funded;
    7. Revoke a grant if necessary or appropriate;
    8. Develop and implement a performance-based evaluation system to evaluate the program;
    9. Report on the program implementation to the Legislature and the Office of the Governor;
    10. Adopt any rules necessary to implement this section.
  6. A community- or neighborhood-based 501(c)(3) entity or a consortium consisting of one or more local 501(c)(3) entities and one or more local school districts may apply for a grant.
  7. Applicants for grants shall submit to the State Department of Education an application that includes the following information:
    1. Identification of one or more neighborhoods to be served by the local S.O.S. program, based on a needs assessment of existing conditions for school-aged children to be served. Data used in the needs assessment may include for each neighborhood to be served by a local program (i) dropout statistics, (ii) the number and percentage of school-aged children who participate in the federal subsidized lunch program, (iii) the number of suspensions and expulsions involving school-aged children, (iv) the number of children to be served, (v) the number and percentage of students with two (2) working parents or one (1) single parent to be served at a site; (vi) the incidence of juvenile crime in the neighborhood, and (vii) any other relevant or unique local demographic data.

      Local authorities shall provide this or related information on a timely basis to local 501(c)(3) entities submitting applications to establish local S.O.S. programs;

    2. A three-year plan that addresses data used in the needs assessment and that includes proposed goals and anticipated outcomes of the local S.O.S. program. The plan shall be prepared after consultation with local after-school programs, schools, community organizations or groups which have as their purpose assisting or helping school-aged children who are at risk of failing in school or entering the juvenile justice system, or other appropriate groups. In addition, the three-year plan shall provide for regular collaborative efforts to seek input and advice from parents of the students being served and from other citizens who reflect the demographic conditions of the students being served;
    3. A statement of how grant funds would be used to address local problems and what other resources would be used to address the problems. This statement should include a list of services to be offered that are related to the goals and outcomes and should include plans for recruiting volunteers to assist in the program’s activities; and
    4. A process for assessing on an annual basis the success of the local plan for addressing the goals of the local S.O.S. program.
  8. The department shall develop and disseminate a request for applications and establish procedures to be followed in developing and submitting applications to establish local S.O.S. programs and administering grants to establish local S.O.S. programs.

    In reviewing grant applications, the State Superintendent of Education shall consider the prevalence of under-served students and families in low-income neighborhoods and in isolated rural areas in the area for which the grant is requested, the severity of the local problems with regard to children at risk of school failure and with regard to school discipline, whether the proposed program meets state standards, and the likelihood that the locally designed plan will deal with the problems successfully. During the review process, the superintendent may recommend modifications in grant applications to applicants. The superintendent shall submit recommendations to the State Board of Education on which applicants should receive grants and the amount they should receive.

    In selecting grant recipients, the State Board of Education shall consider (a) the recommendations of the superintendent, (b) the geographic location of the applicants, and (c) the demographic profile of the applicants. After considering these factors, the State Board of Education shall give priority to grant applications that will serve areas that have a high incidence of juvenile crime and that propose different approaches that can serve as models for other communities. The State Board of Education shall select the grant recipients prior to July 1, 1995, for local programs that will be in operation at the beginning of the 1995-1996 school year, and prior to July 1 and thereafter for the appropriate school year.

    A grant recipient may request a modification of a grant or additional funds to implement a grant through the grant application process. The request shall be reviewed and accepted or rejected in the same manner as a grant application.

  9. The State Department of Education shall administer the grant program under the direction of the State Board of Education. The State Department of Education shall provide technical assistance to grant applicants and recipients.
  10. All agencies of the state and local government, including departments of human services, health departments, local mental health, and intellectual disability commissions, court personnel, law enforcement agencies and cities and counties shall cooperate with the State Department of Education and local school boards that receive grants in coordinating the S.O.S. program at the state level and in implementing the S.O.S. program at the local level.
  11. The Department of Education shall develop and implement an evaluation system, under the direction of the State Board of Education, that will assess the efficiency and effectiveness of the S.O.S. program. However, private schools shall not be included under the provisions of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1995, ch. 609, § 1; Laws, 2010, ch. 476, § 9, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 1, 2010).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1995, ch. 609, § 2, provides as follows:

“SECTION 2. All new programs authorized in this act are subject to the availability of funds specifically appropriated therefor by the Legislature.”

Laws of 2009, ch. 489, preamble and § 1, effective April 6, 2009, provide:

“WHEREAS, studies about what happens to unsupervised children indicate that when left alone, these children: have higher absentee rates at school and lower academic test scores; exhibit higher levels of fear, stress, nightmares, loneliness and boredom; are one and seven-tenths (1/7/10) times more likely to use alcohol; and are one and six-tenths (1/6/10) times more likely to smoke cigarettes; and

“WHEREAS, data shows that in several communities throughout the United States, the violent juvenile crime rate soars in the hours immediately after school and that children are most likely to be victims of a violent crime committed by a nonfamily member between 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.; and

“WHEREAS, research indicates that children who attend high quality after-school programs have better peer relations, emotional adjustment, conflict resolution skills, grades and conduct in school compared to their peers who are not in after-school programs; and

“WHEREAS, children who attend after-school programs spend more time in learning opportunities, academic activities and enrichment activities and spend less time watching television than their peers; and

“WHEREAS, in one (1) study, children who attended an after-school program missed fewer days of school, had better homework completion, better school behavior and higher test scores; and

“WHEREAS, polls show that ninety-two percent (92%) of Americans believe there should be organized activities for children and teens during after-school hours; and

“WHEREAS, polls show that seventy-five percent (75%) of Americans are ready to either pay more taxes or to forego a tax cut to provide children with good early childhood development programs and quality after-school programs; and

“WHEREAS, as working parents can attest, child care concerns continue after children are old enough to go to school: a parent who is employed full time can be away from home an average of two thousand four hundred (2,400) hours a year, and children spend less than half of that time in school. If children participate in a quality school-age care program or another organized out-of-school time activity, parents can be assured that their children are safe and supervised; NOW, THEREFORE,

“SECTION 1. (1) There is created a task force to be known as the ‘Mississippi After-School Initiative Task Force’ to develop a plan to ensure quality after-school programs for every school-age child in the State of Mississippi. The task force shall make a report of its findings and recommendations, including any recommended legislation, to the Governor and Legislature before December 1, 2009.

“(2) The members of the task force should represent several diverse disciplines including, but not limited to: violence prevention; parents; park districts; special need populations; private foundations; civic and cultural organizations; community-based youth service providers; law enforcement; education; local voluntary organizations; faith-based communities; health; research institutions; child and youth advocacy; alcohol, tobacco and substance abuse prevention; and mental health. The task force shall be composed of the following eleven (11) members:

“(a) The State Superintendent of Public Education, or his or her designee

“(b) The Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Human Services, or his or her designee;

“(c) The Executive Officer of the State Department of Health, or his or her designee;

“(d) The Chairman of the House of Representatives Education Committee, or his or her designee;

“(e) The Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, or his or her designee; and

“(f) Two (2) persons from each of the three (3) Supreme Court districts to be appointed by the Governor, one (1) of whom shall be experienced in early childhood development, runs an after-school program and an administrator of Head Start Program, for a total of six (6) members.

“(3) All members of the task force must be appointed within thirty (30) days after the effective date of this act. The task force shall hold its first meeting no later than August 15, 2009, on the call of the Governor at a place designated by him. At that first meeting, the task force shall elect from among its membership a chairman and other officers, if any, determined to be necessary. A majority of the membership of the task force shall constitute a quorum, and an affirmative vote of a majority of the task force shall be required for all actions taken. All members must be notified in writing of all meetings at least five (5) days before the date on which a meeting of the task force is scheduled.

“(4) The task force shall make an assessment of the after-school services available in this state, including identification of the number of children and youth served in after-school programs and of the various funding programs currently supporting after-school programs. The task force shall recommend a plan for coordinating after-school services and for achieving the goal of providing after-school services to every school-age child in the State of Mississippi.

“(5) Members of the task force other than the legislative members shall receive reimbursement for travel expenses incurred while engaged in official business of the task force in accordance with Section 25-3-41, and the legislative members of the task force shall receive the compensation authorized for committee meetings when the Legislature is not in session. Payment of these expenses must be from funds made available specifically for such purpose by the Legislature or from any other public or private source.

“(6) The State Department of Education and the Mississippi Department of Human Services, acting jointly, shall provide appropriate staff support to assist the task force in carrying out its duties. Each department shall designate an appropriate employee to act as a point of contact for the provision of staff support to the task force.

“(7) Upon presentation of its report, the task force shall be dissolved.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2010 amendment deleted “hereby” preceding “established” in the first sentence in (2); and substituted “and intellectual disability commissions” for “mental retardation” in (10).

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

State Superintendent of education and his duties generally, see §§37-3-9,37-3-11.

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Program, see §43-17-1 et seq.

Federal Aspects—

Organizations and nonprofit corporations that qualify as exempt from federal income tax on corporations, see 26 USCS § 501(c)(3).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 264 et seq., 344, 345, 353 et seq.

CJS.

78A C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 1082, 1086, 1089.

§ 37-3-87. Mississippi Better Sight for Better Learning Program; face-to-face comprehensive eye examination for children entering first grade if screening indicates need; student vision screening program.

  1. This section shall be known and may be cited as the “Mississippi Better Sight for Better Learning Program.”
  2. The State Board of Education shall recommend a child entering first grade, whose eye screening indicates a need to have a face-to-face comprehensive eye examination, to be completed by an optometrist or ophthalmologist by January 1 of the child’s first grade year. A principal, director or other person in charge of a public school shall collect from the child’s parent or legal guardian, evidence of the child’s face-to-face comprehensive eye examination, as provided by regulation of the State Board of Education, or a signed request by the parent or legal guardian of each student opting out of the face-to-face comprehensive eye examination. A face-to-face comprehensive eye examination that was performed before a child’s initial enrollment in a public school shall be deemed to satisfy the requirement of this section. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules and regulations under the authority provided in this section to implement the provisions of this section.
  3. The State Department of Education is hereby authorized and empowered to establish a student vision screening program to make eye screening services available to students in Grades K-12 in the public schools in order to detect vision problems which can lead to academic problems. Such eye screening service shall be based on a process that is screening in nature, and not diagnostic, which is intended to identify with a reasonably high probability, students with a wide range of eye problems who should seek the services of an eye care professional for examination, diagnosis and corrective recommendation. Such eye screening service shall provide each student screened with a report of the student’s screening results to be taken home. Each school shall be provided with a list of the students screened, and their results. Statistical summaries of the screening results shall be provided to each school, and composite statistics by school system, county or district shall be provided to the State Department of Education. The State Department of Education may contract with any legal entity to administer the student vision screening program on the school district level, and such contract shall be let on a competitive basis. State funding for the program shall only be available subject to appropriation by the Legislature.
  4. The school board of any local school district shall cooperate with the State Department of Education and any entity under contract with the department to implement the student face-to-face comprehensive eye examination or vision screening programs established under this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1996, ch. 440, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1996; Laws, 2018, ch. 395, § 13; Laws, 2019, ch. 305, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Amendment Notes —

The 2018 amendment deleted (3), which created an advisory committee for the student vision screening program and prescribed its composition and duties; and made a minor stylistic change.

The 2019 amendment added (1) and (2) and designated former paragraphs (1) and (2) as paragraphs (3) and (4); and inserted “face-to-face comprehensive eye examination or” in (4).

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

State Board of Health generally, see §41-3-1 et seq.

§ 37-3-89. School discipline and classroom management courses; requirement; approval.

The State Board of Education, acting through the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development, shall require each educator preparation program in the state, as a condition for approval, to include a course or courses on school discipline or classroom management as a required part of the teacher education program. All school discipline or classroom management courses offered by a teacher education program shall be approved by the Educator License Commission.

HISTORY: Laws, 1998, ch. 544, § 10, eff from and after passage (approved April 13, 1998); brought forward without change, Laws, 2019, ch. 427, § 5, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1998, ch. 544, which enacted the provisions of Sections 37-3-89, 37-3-91, 37-101-29, 37-149-7, 37-151-10 and 37-159-1 through 37-159-17, and amended the provisions of Sections 37-9-77, 37-17-8, 37-143-11 [repealed] and 37-149-1, may be cited as the “Mississippi Critical Teacher Shortage Act of 1998” pursuant to Section 37-159-1.

The preamble to Laws of 1998, ch. 544, provides in pertinent part:

“WHEREAS, in many rural areas and communities in the State of Mississippi, particularly in the Mississippi Delta, there exists a critical shortage of qualified teachers that continues to grow at an increasing rate as the number of teachers in those areas who are eligible for retirement escalates while fewer college students aspire to a career in teaching; and

“WHEREAS, the absence of a qualified teacher in every classroom in the state contributes to overall lower test scores for the State of Mississippi and will negatively impact the state’s work force of tomorrow, made of our children of today; and

“WHEREAS, it is the intent of the Legislature, in passing this act, to immediately reverse this teacher shortage trend by offering attractive incentives to qualified persons who pursue a profession in teaching and agree to serve in those communities wherein the greatest need for teachers exists, thereby enabling every child in the State of Mississippi to receive a quality education: NOW, THEREFORE,”

Laws of 2019, ch. 427, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2019 amendment brought the section forward without change.

Cross References —

Commission on teacher and administrator education, certification and licensure and development, see §37-3-2.

§ 37-3-91. Regional behavioral institutes; discipline and classroom management strategies; participation; standardized Memorandum of Understanding between mental health facilities and school districts to include referral protocols and standardized behavioral health screening.

  1. Subject to the availability of funds appropriated for such purpose, the State Department of Education may establish regional behavioral institutes for the purpose of providing state-of-the-art training to teachers and administrators in discipline and classroom management strategies and behavioral health screenings for students.
  2. Any school district may volunteer to participate in a regional behavioral institute. However, the State Department of Education may require a school district to participate in a regional behavioral institute if the department determines that such participation is in the best interest of the school district based upon:
    1. Complaints received and determined by the department to be valid which relate to disciplinary problems in the school district;
    2. Any visit to the school by representatives of the department which indicates disciplinary problems in the school district; or
    3. A review of reports submitted by a school district to the department which indicates disciplinary problems in the school district.
  3. Effective with the 2019-2020 school year, the Mississippi Department of Mental Health shall develop a standardized Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) to be utilized by the Mississippi Department of Mental Health certified mental health providers and mental health facilities in providing mental health services to local school districts. The MOU shall include standardized behavioral health screening and referral protocols, procedures and forms to be utilized by the local school districts. Any standardized behavioral health screening and referral protocols shall only be performed on students with the approval of the student’s parent or legal guardian. The Mississippi Department of Mental Health shall provide online training for appropriate school personnel to conduct initial behavioral health screenings of students experiencing or exhibiting behavioral stress or at risk of harming themselves or others.

HISTORY: Laws, 1998, ch. 544, § 12, eff from and after passage (approved April 13, 1998); Laws, 2019, ch. 427, § 6, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1998, ch. 544, which enacted the provisions of Sections 37-3-89, 37-3-91, 37-101-29, 37-149-7, 37-151-10 and 37-159-1 through 37-159-17, and amended the provisions of Sections 37-9-77, 37-17-8, 37-143-11 [repealed] and 37-149-1, may be cited as the “Mississippi Critical Teacher Shortage Act of 1998” pursuant to Section 37-159-1.

The preamble to Laws of 1998, ch. 544, provides in pertinent part:

“WHEREAS, in many rural areas and communities in the State of Mississippi, particularly in the Mississippi Delta, there exists a critical shortage of qualified teachers that continues to grow at an increasing rate as the number of teachers in those areas who are eligible for retirement escalates while fewer college students aspire to a career in teaching; and

“WHEREAS, the absence of a qualified teacher in every classroom in the state contributes to overall lower test scores for the State of Mississippi and will negatively impact the state’s work force of tomorrow, made of our children of today; and

“WHEREAS, it is the intent of the Legislature, in passing this act, to immediately reverse this teacher shortage trend by offering attractive incentives to qualified persons who pursue a profession in teaching and agree to serve in those communities wherein the greatest need for teachers exists, thereby enabling every child in the State of Mississippi to receive a quality education: NOW, THEREFORE,”

Laws of 2019, ch. 427, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2019 amendment added “and behavioral health screenings for students” at the end of (1); and added (3).

§ 37-3-93. School Crisis Management Program; quick response teams; toll-free telephone service for reporting school violence; certified threat assessment officers and duties thereof.

  1. Subject to the availability of funding specifically appropriated for such purpose, there is established a School Crisis Management Program under the State Department of Education. This program is to be initiated and executed by the department using only existing staff and resources. Under this program, the State Department of Education shall create an office making available a quick response team of personnel trained in school safety and crisis management to respond to traumatic or violent situations that impact students and faculty in the public schools in Mississippi. The required School Crisis Management Program shall operate in accordance with the following:
    1. The basic response team shall consist of those personnel designated by the State Superintendent of Public Education, or their designees, depending on the size of the school and the nature of the event.
    2. In order to access the services of a response team, the request must be made by the local school principal or the superintendent of schools, who shall make the request to the State Department of Education or its contact designee.
    3. A response team shall enter a school to work with students and faculty for a period of no more than three (3) days, unless otherwise requested by the school district.
    4. The State Department of Education, or its designee, shall operate a toll-free incoming wide area telephone service for the purpose of receiving reports of suspected cases of school violence and other traumatic situations impacting on students and faculty in the public schools.
    5. The request made by a school district to access the services of a response team following a school safety incident may seek a review of the local school district’s safety plan, and the results of this evaluation may be published by the local school board in a newspaper with wide circulation in the district.
    6. Subject to the availability of funds specifically appropriated therefor by the Legislature, the expenses of the quick response teams and their administrative support shall be provided from state funds. The State Department of Education may apply for and expend funds for the support and maintenance of this program from private and other funding sources.
  2. Local school districts, school superintendents and principals may request and utilize the services of quick response teams provided for under this section; however, this section does not require school officials to request the services of quick response teams.
  3. As a component of the School Crisis Management Program, the Mississippi Office of Homeland Security shall develop a curriculum, train and certify threat assessment officers. A certified threat assessment officer shall conduct an annual inspection and threat assessment of each public school in the state. The threat assessment officer shall develop an improvement plan for each school inspected. The assessment shall include the inspection of surveillance equipment and building-specific floor plans. The findings of the inspection and threat assessment, including a copy of the improvement plan shall be provided to local law enforcement agencies and the local school board within four (4) weeks of completion.

HISTORY: Laws, 2001, ch. 486, § 4; Laws, 2003, ch. 416, § 1; Laws, 2007, ch. 416, § 1; Laws, 2010, ch. 488, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2010; Laws, 2019, ch. 427, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2001, ch. 486, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2001.’ ”

Laws of 2019, ch. 427, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. This act shall be entitled and may be cited as the ‘Mississippi School Safety Act of 2019.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2003 amendment extended the date of the repealer from “July 1, 2003” to “July 1, 2007.”

The 2007 amendment extended the date of the repealer in (3) from July 1, 2007, until July 1, 2010.

The 2010 amendment deleted (3), which was the repealer for the section.

The 2019 amendment inserted “required” in the last sentence in (1); and added (3).

Cross References —

State superintendent of education and his duties generally, see §§37-3-9,37-3-11.

§ 37-3-95. Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) statewide coordinator; powers and duties.

  1. Subject to the availability of funding for such purpose, the State Superintendent of Public Education shall employ within the State Department of Education or, in the alternative, contract with the Mississippi Military Department for a statewide coordinator for Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) programs in the public schools. If employed by the State Department of Education, the JROTC statewide coordinator must be an active or retired member of the military and must meet any additional qualifications that may be established for the position by the State Superintendent of Public Education or State Personnel Board. However, if for any reason within the two-year period beginning July 1, 2014, a new JROTC statewide coordinator is employed by the department, the employment of such individual shall not be subject to the rules and regulations of the State Personnel Board, except as otherwise provided in Section 25-9-127(4).
  2. The following are the powers and duties of the JROTC statewide coordinator:
    1. To coordinate training of new JROTC instructors and continuing education programs for certified instructors;
    2. To facilitate communication between JROTC programs in the various public schools;
    3. To assist in organizing competitions among JROTC units from different high schools;
    4. To assist in the development of the JROTC curriculum;
    5. To compile information on scholarships available to JROTC participants and to solicit support for such scholarships;
    6. To assist in establishing support groups for parents of students participating in a JROTC program;
    7. To solicit and accept financial support for JROTC programs from private sector donors;
    8. To promote the involvement of JROTC units within their local communities;
    9. To facilitate interaction between JROTC units and the Mississippi National Guard and Mississippi Air National Guard;
    10. To promote, in general, the JROTC program in high schools throughout the state;
    11. To assist local schools with the application process for establishing new JROTC programs in high schools; and
    12. To perform such other duties relating to the JROTC program established by the State Superintendent of Public Education or State Board of Education.

HISTORY: Laws, 2001, ch. 592, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 491, § 5, eff from and after passage (approved April 15, 2014).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2001, ch. 592, § 2, provides as follows:

“SECTION 2. The State Board of Education shall study the issues relating to the funding of Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) and the licensing of JROTC instructors. In studying the licensing issue, the board shall consider the credentials required for certification as a JROTC instructor. The board shall present a report on its findings concerning these issues along with any other issues related to JROTC to the Chairmen of the Education Committees of the House of Representatives and Senate before December 15, 2001, which report must include recommended legislation necessary to effectuate the board’s recommendations relating to JROTC.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment added the last sentence in (1).

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

State Superintendent of education and his duties generally, see §§37-3-9,37-3-11.

§ 37-3-97. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 2011, ch. 442, § 20, effective from and after July 1, 2011.

§37-3-97. [Laws, 2006, ch. 346, § 5; Laws, 2006, ch. 504, § 14; reenacted without change, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 6, eff from and after June 30, 2009.]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-97 provided for a joint report on state teacher education programs.

§ 37-3-99. Repealed.

Repealed by its own terms, effective July 1, 2013.

§37-3-99. [Laws, 2006, ch. 554, § 1; Laws, 2007, ch. 511, § 1; Laws, 2008, ch. 418, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2008.]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-3-99 related to curriculum choices for students who are interested in direct entry into the workforce upon high school graduation and created a pilot program to redesign secondary schools to function as workforce development centers.

§ 37-3-101. Local school districts to adopt policy on student suicide prevention and provide in-service training on suicide prevention education for all school district employees.

  1. Each local school district shall adopt a policy on student suicide prevention. The policies shall be developed in consultation with school and community stakeholders, school-employed mental health professions, and suicide prevention experts, and shall, at a minimum, address procedures relating to suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. To assist districts in developing policies for student suicide prevention, the State Department of Education shall establish a model policy in consultation with the Mississippi Department of Mental Health for use by local school districts in accordance with this section.
  2. In the 2017-2018 school year, the State Department of Education shall require that local school districts conduct in-service training on suicide prevention education for all school district employees. The Mississippi Department of Mental Health will be responsible for development of the content of the training. This education may be accomplished through self-review of suitable suicide prevention materials.

HISTORY: Laws, 2009, ch. 529, § 1; Laws, 2017, ch. 365, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Amendment Notes —

The 2017 amendment added (1), and designated the former section (2); and in (2), substituted “2017-2018” for “2009-2010” and “school district employees” for “licensed teachers and principals” in the first sentence, and deleted “and determining the appropriate amount of time that should be allotted for the training” from the end of the second sentence.

§ 37-3-103. In-service training on suicide prevention education for newly employed school district employees.

Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year and annually thereafter, the State Department of Education shall require that local school districts conduct in-service training on suicide prevention education for all newly employed school district employees. The Mississippi Department of Mental Health will be responsible for development of the content of the training. This education may be accomplished through self-review of suitable suicide prevention materials.

HISTORY: Laws, 2009, ch. 529, § 2; Laws, 2017, ch. 365, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Amendment Notes —

The 2017 amendment, in the first sentence, substituted “2017-2018 school year and annually thereafter, the State” for “2010-2011 school year, the State” and substituted “school district employees” for “licensed teachers and principals”; and deleted “and determining the appropriate amount of time that should be allotted for the training” from the end of the second sentence.

§ 37-3-105. In-service training for all licensed grades K through 3 public school district teachers to include intensive, comprehensive, research-based reading methods.

Beginning with the 2009-2010 school year, the State Department of Education shall require that in-service training shall include an emphasis on intensive, comprehensive and researched-based reading methods for all licensed teachers teaching Grades K through 3 in a public school district. The education may be accomplished through self-review of suitable intensive, comprehensive and researched-based reading materials.

HISTORY: Laws, 2009, ch. 529, § 3; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 48, eff from and after July 1, 2013.

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment added “in a public school district” at the end of the first sentence.

§ 37-3-107. Curriculum guidelines for implementation of school bus safety curriculum for grades K through 3.

The State Department of Education shall develop and issue curriculum guidelines to school districts relating to the implementation of a school bus safety curriculum for implementation in Kindergarten through Grade 3.

HISTORY: Laws, 2011, ch. 481, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2011.

Editor’s Notes —

Chapter 481, Laws of 2011, which enacted this section, is known as “Nathan’s Law.”

Chapter 4. Mississippi Community College Board

§ 37-4-1. Legislative findings and declaration of policy.

The Legislature finds and determines that the social, cultural and economic well-being of the people of Mississippi, and hence the state, are enhanced by various educational experiences beyond the elementary and secondary school years. The Legislature hereby provides a means for the continuation of a system of community and junior colleges and declares the following to be the policy of the State of Mississippi:

The general purpose of the community and junior colleges is to provide educational services for the people of its geographic area within the legal structure of the comprehensive community college. These services include the teaching and guiding of students who intend to transfer to senior colleges to pursue an academic degree and the teaching and guiding of career-oriented students in academic, technical and vocational programs. These services also include providing opportunities for continuing education in academic, technical, vocational and adult education, and providing leadership in civic, economic and cultural growth.

Different geographic regions of the state have differing needs for human development.

Local governance of the public community and junior colleges is an effective and efficient means of meeting the diverse local needs, as well as those needs and priorities established by the state.

All post-high school youth and adults who have the motivation and ability to benefit from additional educational services and experiences should be provided such an opportunity.

Community and junior colleges should provide quality instructional activities that are accessible geographically and financially to the people of the state, within the resources available for this purpose.

Instructional activities should be related to the needs of the individual, region and state, and should be available throughout one’s life regardless of prior educational experiences or attainment.

An appropriate relationship between local district and state financial support of community and junior colleges shall be established.

Coordination between public schools, community and junior colleges and universities shall complement the educational goals and attainments of individuals and the state.

The Associate Degree should be a definitive and accepted higher educational degree, recognized for transfer to four-year institutions and for employment and promotion in business and industry.

The community and junior colleges shall be the presumptive deliverers of public post-secondary training designed to meet the needs of individuals, business and state development objectives. This includes, but is not limited to, post-secondary training conducted under federal and state vocational and technical acts.

Community and junior colleges shall be considered agencies of local government rather than agencies of the state.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1986 (became law on April 4, 1986, without Governor’s signature).

Cross References —

Education Achievement Council to work collaboratively with the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges to achieve state’s goal of increasing educational attainment and skill levels to national average, see §37-163-1.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Community and junior colleges, not being agencies of the state, do not fall under the purview of the Department of Information Technology Services for the acquisition of information technology equipment and services. Litchliter, Mar. 16, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0139.

Expenditures of tax proceeds by community and junior colleges for electronic data processing equipment is subject to approval by the Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services. Litchliter, Apr. 12, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0153.

Community and junior colleges are not covered by the state’s leave law, but retain the authority to adopt their own leave policies so long as provisions therein for retirement credit do not exceed the state law provisions. Ready, Oct. 31, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0331.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-4-3. Establishment of board; composition; qualifications, appointment, terms of office and compensation of members; officers; director of state system of public junior and community colleges; general powers and duties of board.

  1. From and after July 1, 1986, there shall be a Mississippi Community College Board which shall receive and distribute funds appropriated by the Legislature for the use of the public community and junior colleges and funds from federal and other sources that are transmitted through the state governmental organization for use by said colleges. This board shall provide general coordination of the public community and junior colleges, assemble reports and such other duties as may be prescribed by law.
  2. The board shall consist of ten (10) members of which none shall be an elected official. The Governor shall appoint two (2) members from the First Mississippi Congressional District, one (1) who shall serve an initial term of two (2) years and one (1) who shall serve an initial term of five (5) years; two (2) members from the Second Mississippi Congressional District, one (1) who shall serve an initial term of five (5) years and one (1) who shall serve an initial term of three (3) years; and two (2) members from the Third Mississippi Congressional District, one (1) who shall serve an initial term of four (4) years and one (1) who shall serve an initial term of two (2) years; two (2) members from the Fourth Mississippi Congressional District, one (1) who shall serve an initial term of three (3) years and one (1) who shall serve an initial term of four (4) years; and two (2) members from the Fifth Mississippi Congressional District, one (1) who shall serve an initial term of five (5) years and one (1) who shall serve an initial term of two (2) years. All subsequent appointments shall be for a term of six (6) years and continue until their successors are appointed and qualify. An appointment to fill a vacancy which arises for reasons other than by expiration of a term of office shall be for the unexpired term only. All members shall be appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate.
  3. There shall be a chairman and vice chairman of the board, elected by and from the membership of the board; and the chairman shall be the presiding officer of the board. The board shall adopt rules and regulations governing times and places for meetings and governing the manner of conducting its business.
  4. The members of the board shall receive no annual salary, but shall receive per diem compensation as authorized by Section 25-3-69, Mississippi Code of 1972, for each day devoted to the discharge of official board duties and shall be entitled to reimbursement for all actual and necessary expenses incurred in the discharge of their duties, including mileage as authorized by Section 25-3-41, Mississippi Code of 1972.
  5. The board shall name a director for the state system of public junior and community colleges, who shall serve at the pleasure of the board. Such director shall be the chief executive officer of the board, give direction to the board staff, carry out the policies set forth by the board, and work with the presidents of the several community and junior colleges to assist them in carrying out the mandates of the several boards of trustees and in functioning within the state system and policies established by the Mississippi Community College Board. The Mississippi Community College Board shall set the salary of the director of the board. The Legislature shall provide adequate funds for the Mississippi Community College Board, its activities and its staff.
  6. The powers and duties of the Mississippi Community College Board shall be:
    1. To authorize disbursements of state-appropriated funds to community and junior colleges through orders in the minutes of the board.
    2. To make studies of the needs of the state as they relate to the mission of the community and junior colleges.
    3. To approve new, changes to and deletions of vocational and technical programs to the various colleges.
    4. To require community and junior colleges to supply such information as the board may request and compile, publish and make available such reports based thereon as the board may deem advisable.
    5. To approve proposed new attendance centers (campus locations) as the local boards of trustees should determine to be in the best interest of the district. Provided, however, that no new community/junior college branch campus shall be approved without an authorizing act of the Legislature.
    6. To serve as the state approving agency for federal funds for proposed contracts to borrow money for the purpose of acquiring land, erecting, repairing, etc., dormitories, dwellings or apartments for students and/or faculty, such loans to be paid from revenue produced by such facilities as requested by local boards of trustees.
    7. To approve applications from community and junior colleges for state funds for vocational-technical education facilities.
    8. To approve any university branch campus offering lower undergraduate level courses for credit.
    9. To appoint members to the Post-Secondary Educational Assistance Board.
    10. To appoint members to the Authority for Educational Television.
    11. To contract with other boards, commissions, governmental entities, foundations, corporations or individuals for programs, services, grants and awards when such are needed for the operation and development of the state public community and junior college system.
    12. To fix standards for community and junior colleges to qualify for appropriations, and qualifications for community and junior college teachers.
    13. To have sign-off approval on the State Plan for Vocational Education which is developed in cooperation with appropriate units of the State Department of Education.
    14. To approve or disapprove of any proposed inclusion within municipal corporate limits of state-owned buildings and grounds of any community college or junior college and to approve or disapprove of land use development, zoning requirements, building codes and delivery of governmental services applicable to state-owned buildings and grounds of any community college or junior college. Any agreement by a local board of trustees of a community college or junior college to annexation of state-owned property or other conditions described in this paragraph shall be void unless approved by the board and by the board of supervisors of the county in which the state-owned property is located.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 2; Laws, 1988, ch. 461; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 9, eff from and after July 1, 2014; Laws, 2019, ch. 436, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved March 29, 2019).

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a typographical error in subsection (2). The words “from the Fourth Mississippi Congressional District, who shall serve an initial term of five (5) years. All subsequent appointments shall be for a term of six (6) years and continue until their successors are appointed and qualify. An appointment to fill a vacancy which arises for reasons other than by expiration of a term of office shall be for the unexpired term only. All members shall be appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate.” were deleted from the end. The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its December 3, 1996, meeting.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1986, ch. 434, § 16, effective July 1, 1986 (became law on April 4, 1986, without Governor’s signature), provides as follows:

“SECTION 16. (1) Effective July 1, 1986, all employees of the Division of Junior Colleges of the State Department of Education shall be transferred according to the merger of their duties by this act. All such transfers shall be in accordance with the rules and regulations of the State Personnel Board.

“(2) All records, personnel, property and unexpended balances of appropriations, allocations or other funds of the Division of Junior Colleges of the State Department of Education shall be transferred to the appropriate agency according to the transfer of its functions under this act.”

Laws of 2009, ch. 438, § 1 provides:

“(1) The Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration is authorized to transfer a portion of state-owned real property, located at 3825 Ridgewood Road, Jackson, Mississippi, to the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges for purposes of constructing a new facility, subject to funds becoming available to the board for that purpose. However, the property shall not be transferred until the requirements and conditions of subsections (2) and (3) of this section have been met.

“(2) The board, with approval of the Department of Finance and Administration, shall select a site for the building and grounds on the property described in subsection (1) of this section, and shall cause a survey to be made of the selected site. The board shall file a copy of the survey, along with documents evidencing approval of the board’s site selection by the Department of Finance and Administration in the land records in the Office of the Chancery Clerk of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi, and with the Secretary of State.

“(3) The conveyance authorized in this section may be subject to additional terms and conditions accepted and agreed upon by the Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration and the board.”

Laws of 2009, ch. 489, § 2, effective April 6, 2009, provides:

“SECTION 2. (1) It is the intent of the Legislature and the expectation of each institution of higher learning and community and junior colleges in the state that all students in such institutions receive a quality education and graduate from such institutions. The Legislature also recognizes that annual performance reports show that a significant number of students underperform and fail to meet their goal of graduation.

“(2) To assist the Legislature in shaping public policy to improve student outcomes and educational opportunities for all students in such institutions of higher learning, there is established a task force to study and report on the graduation rates in the state institutions of higher learning and junior and community colleges.

“(3) The task force shall be composed of the following thirteen (13) members:

“(a) The Chairmen of the House and Senate Universities and Colleges Committees;

“(b) The Chairmen of the House and Senate Education Committees;

“(c) The State Superintendent of Public Education or his designee;

“(d) The Commissioner of Higher Education or his designee;

“(e) The Director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges or his designee;

“(f) The Chairman of the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning, the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges and the State Board of Education;

“(g) A representative of the Governor’s Office appointed by the Governor;

“(h) A president of one (1) comprehensive university appointed by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning; and

“(i) A president of one (1) historical black university appointed by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning.

“(4) Appointments to the task force must be made within thirty (30) days after the effective date of this act. Within fifteen (15) days after the expiration of the period for making appointments, on a day to be designated by the Commissioner of Higher Education, the task force shall meet and organize by selecting from its membership a chairman and a vice chairman. The vice chairman also must serve as secretary and be responsible for keeping all records of the task force. A majority of the membership of the task force shall constitute a quorum. In the selection of its officers and the adoption of rules, resolutions and reports, an affirmative vote of a majority of the task force shall be required. All members must be notified in writing of all meetings at least five (5) days before the date on which a meeting of the task force is scheduled.

“(5) The task force may contract for any professional services that it deems necessary to complete its work and shall tour any universities and community or junior colleges as it deems necessary. The Legislature shall appropriate sufficient funding to the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning for the contractual costs and travel associated with attending meetings and for the on-site visits to universities and community or junior colleges.

“(6) Members of the task force who are not legislators, state officials or state employees shall be compensated at the per diem rate authorized by Section 25-3-69 and reimbursed in accordance with Section 25-3-41 for mileage and actual expenses incurred in the performance of their duties. Legislative members of the task force shall be paid from the contingent expense funds of their respective houses in the same manner as provided for committee meetings when the Legislature is not in session; however, no per diem or expense for attending meetings of the task force may be paid while the Legislature is in session. Task force members may not incur per diem, travel or other expenses unless previously authorized by vote at a meeting of the task force, which action must be recorded in the official minutes of the meeting. Nonlegislative members may be paid from any funds made available to the task force for that purpose.

“(7) The task force shall compile data, study and report on measures that may be taken to improve graduation rates in the universities, community colleges and junior colleges.

“(8) The Commissioner of Higher Education shall provide appropriate staff to assist the task force with carrying out its duties. Before December 31, 2009, the task force shall submit to the Legislature and the Governor a written report of its findings and recommendations on measures to improve graduation rates in universities, community colleges and junior colleges. Upon presentation of its report, the task force shall be dissolved.”

Laws of 2011, ch. 511, § 1, provides:

“SECTION 1. (1) The State Superintendent of Public Education, the Commissioner of Higher Education and the Executive Director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, acting jointly, shall develop a comprehensive report and recommendations to the 2012 Legislature on the implementation and operations of ‘Early College High Schools.’ The report shall be submitted no later than January 2, 2012, and shall provide, at a minimum, the following:

“(a) A clear definition of what constitutes an Early College High School and how it enhances education and job-related opportunities;

“(b) The mission and intent of such schools;

“(c) The established criteria for admission;

“(d) An outline of the comprehensive costs of establishing and operating such a school, including transportation, and recommendations on how the state and local school districts should pay those costs;

“(e) A requirement to provide reports on the status and level of success of operating Early College High Schools in other states across the country;

“(f) Implications for student participation in sports programs and other extracurricular activities when attending an Early College High School;

“(g) An identification of and recommendations on any state laws and policies that may need amending to provide authority for the implementation and operation of such schools;

“(h) Recommendations and costs for state and local funding of transportation services for other forms of dual enrollment programs operated across the state; and

“(i) Any other information as determined to be necessary to benefit the scope and detail of the report.

“(2) The State Superintendent of Public Education, the Commissioner of Higher Education and the Executive Director of the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, acting jointly, shall include specific recommendations on the establishment of an Early College High School Pilot Program in Mississippi in the report submitted to the 2012 Legislature.”

Laws of 2011, ch. 511, § 2, effective April 26, 2011, provides:

“SECTION 2. (1) The State Board of Education, in conjunction with the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning and the State Board for Community and Junior Colleges, shall study and develop a comprehensive report and recommendations to the 2012 Legislature, by January 2, 2012, on the implementation, expansion and costs associated with the establishment of an Adult High School Diploma. The Chairmen of the House and Senate Education Committees, or their respective designees, and a representative appointed by the Governor, shall serve on the study panel for the development of an Adult High School Diploma.

“(2) The gubernatorial appointment to the study panel shall be made within thirty (30) days after the effective date of this act.

“(3) Legislative members of the study panel shall serve without compensation for their services, but may be reimbursed for necessary expense in attending to the actual business of the study panel from any available funds, as provided by law. Legislative members shall be reimbursed from the contingent expense fund of their respective house, but only with the specific approval of the Rules Committee of the respective house; however, no expense for attending meetings of the study panel may be paid while the Legislature is in session.”

Laws of 2012, ch. 336, § 1, provides in part:

“SECTION 1. The Department of Finance and Administration, acting on behalf of the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, is authorized to donate and convey to Meridian Community College, certain real property and any improvements thereon, located at 841 Highway 19 North, in the City of Meridian, Lauderdale County, Mississippi, currently occupied by the Mississippi Highway Patrol, Troop H, and more particularly described as follows:

[For a complete description of the property, see Section 1 of Chapter 336, Laws of 2012.]

“(2) If at any time after the donation of the real property described in subsection (1) of this section Meridian Community College, ceases to use the real property for the purposes intended at the time of donation, the college shall forfeit its rights, title and interest in the real property, and all of the rights, title and interest in the real property shall revert back to the State of Mississippi.

“(3) The State of Mississippi shall retain all mineral rights to the real property donated under this section.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment, in (1), (5), and (6), substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges”; and in (5), substituted “Director of the Board” for “Director of the State System of Community and Junior Colleges” in the third sentence.

The 2019 amendment, effective March 29, 2019, in (2), deleted “and none shall be engaged in the educational profession” at the end of the first sentence, and deleted the former next-to-last sentence, which read: “No two (2) appointees shall reside in the same junior college district.”

Cross References —

Division of state into five congressional disricts, see §23-15-1037.

Mississippi Community College Board to create accountability and transparency website; website to include, among other things, access to financial reports and audits, budgets, etc., see §27-104-155.

Assistance by State Board of Community and Junior Colleges in making relevant information available to Cooperative Extension Service for information clearinghouse assisting farmers, see §69-2-5.

Board to determine amount of fees authorized under §§75-60-15 and75-60-27 after receiving recommendations from commission on proprietary school and college registration, see §75-60-15.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Appointments to this board should be reviewed under the last five-district plan which was in effect. Canon, Jan. 16, 2003, A.G. Op. #03-0016.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

15A Am. Jur. 2d, Colleges and Universities §§ 1 et seq.

CJS.

14A C.J.S., Colleges and Universities §§ 1, 6, 7, 9, 42, 44.

Law Reviews.

Adams, Through the looking glass and what the Supreme Court finds there: the political setting of United States v. Fordice. 62 Miss. L. J. 263, Winter, 1993.

Connell, The road to United States v. Fordice: what is the duty of public colleges and universities in former de jure states to desegregate? 62 Miss. L. J. 285, Winter, 1993.

Dunaway and Mills, United States v. Fordice: A summary of the parties’ arguments. 62 Miss. L. J. 361, Winter, 1993.

Davis, The quest for equal education in Mississippi: the implications of United States v. Fordice. 62 Miss. L. J. 405, Winter, 1993.

§ 37-4-4. Persons required to attend meetings of board; compensation.

The Commissioner of Higher Education, or his designee, and one (1) member of the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning to be designated by the chairman of said board, shall attend all regular meetings of the Mississippi Community College Board. Said university representatives shall have no jurisdiction or vote on any matter within the jurisdiction of the board. The Commissioner of Higher Education and any designee who is a state employee shall receive no per diem for attending meetings of the board, but shall be entitled to actual and necessary expense reimbursement and mileage for attending meetings at locations other than Jackson, Mississippi. The designee of the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning shall receive per diem compensation as authorized by Section 25-3-69, Mississippi Code of 1972, for attending said meetings, and shall be entitled to reimbursement for all actual and necessary expense reimbursement and mileage, which shall be paid from funds appropriated to the Mississippi Community College Board.

HISTORY: Laws, 1989, ch. 413, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 10, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” at the end of the first and last sentences.

Cross References —

Commissioner of higher education, see §37-101-7.

§ 37-4-5. Definitions.

  1. The terms “Junior College Commission” and “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges,” whenever they appear in the laws of the State of Mississippi, mean the “Mississippi Community College Board.”
  2. The term “High School Equivalency Diploma,” whenever it appears in the laws of the State of Mississippi, means a high school diploma that has been approved by the Mississippi Community College Board.
  3. The terms “general educational development,” “general education development” and “GED,” whenever they appear in the laws of the State of Mississippi, mean a high school equivalency diploma as defined in subsection (2) of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 434, § 18; Laws, 2011, ch. 358, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 1; brought forward without change, Laws, 2014, ch. 398, § 1; brought forward without change, Laws, 2016, ch. 351, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 5, 2016).

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 397, Laws of 2014, effective from and after July 1, 2014 (approved March 19, 2014, 9:10 a.m.), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 398, Laws of 2014, effective from and after July 1, 2014 (approved March 19, 2014, 9:27 a.m.), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 398, Laws of 2014, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Amendment Notes —

The 2011 amendment inserted “and ‘State Board for Community and Junior Colleges’ and substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” and made minor stylistic changes.

The first 2014 amendment (ch. 397) brought the section forward without change.

The second 2014 amendment (ch. 398) added the (1) designation, and added (2) and (3).

The 2016 amendment brought the section forward without change.

§ 37-4-7. Development by board of uniform employment contract for professional employees.

The Mississippi Community College Board shall study the feasibility of developing and implementing a state adopted uniform contract within each community and junior college district. Such study shall include, but not be limited to, the following areas for consideration:

Terms of employment;

Salary schedules;

Leave provisions;

Health insurance benefits;

Tenure;

Retirement benefits.

HISTORY: Laws, 1988, ch. 561, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 11, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” in the first sentence.

§ 37-4-9. Conduct and funding of incentive certification program.

The Mississippi Community College Board is authorized to receive income from voluntary fees, contributions, donations, other forms of financial assistance, materials or manpower from persons, corporations, organizations and other sources, private or public, to be utilized and expended by the board in carrying out the incentive certification program mandated by the Work Force and Education Act of 1994 in Sections 37-151-63 through 37-151-75 and 37-153-1 through 37-153-13. Additionally, awards or scholarships to industry or to students or both are authorized.

HISTORY: Laws, 1995, ch. 376, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 12, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges.”

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 120, 122.

CJS.

78A C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 874-883.

§ 37-4-11. Transfer of Industrial Training Programs and postsecondary Adult Short-term Training Programs to Workforce Education Program; board to develop accountability system; annual report.

  1. The purpose of this section is to insure the uniform management, oversight and accountability of the state-funded Industrial Training Programs, and postsecondary Adult Short-Term Training Programs and Workforce Education Programs administered by the Mississippi Community College Board for adults provided to the citizens of Mississippi.
  2. Effective July 1, 1999, all state-funded Industrial Training Programs and postsecondary Adult Short-term Training Programs administered by and through the State Department of Education on June 30, 1999, shall be transferred to the Workforce Education Program of the Mississippi Community College Board. The Legislature shall appropriate annually to the Mississippi Community College Board funds necessary to administer these programs.
  3. Effective July 1, 1999, all funds, unexpended balances, assets, liabilities and property of the State Department of Education which are used in the delivery of postsecondary Adult Short-term Training Programs and Industrial Training Programs, excluding funds, unexpended balances, assets, liabilities and property associated with the Research and Curriculum Unit at Mississippi State University, shall be transferred to the Workforce Education Program funds of the Mississippi Community College Board. The State Department of Education also shall transfer to the Mississippi Community College Board all positions and funds employed by the State Department of Education and community colleges which render industrial training, postsecondary adult short-term training or workforce education services, including the seven (7) administrative and support positions providing support to these programs. Sufficient staff positions shall be transferred from the State Department of Education, which will have a reduction in training and educational responsibilities by virtue of this section, to the Mississippi Community College Board to assure that the transferred responsibilities will be properly managed and administered. Any funds available to the State Department of Education for Industrial Training Programs and state-funded postsecondary Adult Short-term Training Programs which are subject to carryover shall be transferred to the Work Force Carryover Fund established by Chapter 498, Laws of 1995, for use by the Mississippi Community College Board, on or before August 15, 1999.
  4. The Mississippi Community College Board shall develop an accountability system that shall report and describe all classes taught in the area of workforce education, the number of persons taught in these classes, and the location and cost of each class taught. To assess the impact of these programs, the Mississippi Community College Board also shall report:
    1. Whether the needs of industry have been met through training program offerings;
    2. Any changes in the income of trainees between the completion of training and the date of the report;
    3. The number of jobs created and the number of jobs retained through the programs; and
    4. Trainee success in passing proficiency tests, where applicable.

      This information shall be reported on a fiscal year basis and shall be provided to the House and Senate Education Committees before December 15 of each year.

HISTORY: Laws, 1999, ch. 572, § 1; Laws, 2003, ch. 312, § 1; Laws, 2003, ch. 416, § 2; Laws, 2006, ch. 368, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 13, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 312, Laws of 2003, effective from and after June 1, 2003, amended this section. Section 2 of ch. 416, Laws of 2003, effective from and after June 30, 2003, also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 2 of ch. 416, Laws of 2003, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect earlier.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2003 amendment (ch. 312) deleted the automatic repealer in former (5) which read: “This section shall be repealed on July 1, 2003.”

The second 2003 amendment (ch. 416) extended the repealer from “July 1, 2003” to “July 1, 2007.”

The 2006 amendment deleted former (5), which read: “This section shall be repealed on July 1, 2007.”

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” throughout the section.

§ 37-4-13. Mississippi Community College Board authorized to negotiate multi-year industrial training program commitments.

  1. In negotiating commitments under the Industrial Training Programs with industries seeking to locate or expand in Mississippi, the Mississippi Community College Board may enter into multi-year agreements for such training programs subject to the availability of funds appropriated therefor.
  2. The Mississippi Community College Board shall file a report with the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Representatives listing the commitments that are made pursuant to subsection (1) of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 2000, 2nd Ex Sess, ch. 1, § 59; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 14, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2000, 2nd Ex Sess, ch. 1, § 1 provides:

“SECTION 1. This act may be cited as the ‘Advantage Mississippi Initiative.’ ”

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” throughout the section.

§ 37-4-15. Board to conduct study of state funding structure for community and junior colleges.

  1. On or after July 1, 2002, the Mississippi Community College Board shall contract with a competent management consulting or accounting firm to study the state funding formula for community and junior colleges. The study shall accomplish the following specific outcomes:
    1. Evaluate the validity of the current student classifications used in the funding formula and make recommendations for change in the classification system if advisable;
    2. Evaluate the weights assigned to each student classification and make recommendations for change in the current weights if advisable;
    3. Identify the best management practices associated with the production of graduates in each of the student classifications and use such information as a basis for validating any changes in weights referred to in paragraph (b) of this subsection. The study of best practices shall also identify the amount of state funding that is used in program areas at schools exhibiting the best management practices.
  2. The report also shall recommend to the Mississippi Community College Board all reporting requirements and systems needed to collect information necessary to maintain a valid system of weights, student classification and the best practices associated with producing graduates most efficiently. All community and junior colleges shall cooperate with the Mississippi Community College Board in conducting this study and in providing all further information on an annual basis necessary to update the weights for programs established as a result of this study, the best management practices and the student classifications established as a result of this study.
  3. The Mississippi Community College Board shall report its findings to the Chairs of the House and Senate Education Committees and the House and Senate Appropriations Committees no later than December 15, 2002.

HISTORY: Laws, 2002, ch. 581, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 397, § 15, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment substituted “Mississippi Community College Board” for “State Board for Community and Junior Colleges” throughout the section.

Chapter 5. County Boards of Education and Superintendents

County Boards of Education

§ 37-5-1. Establishment; composition; qualifications and election of members generally; counties in which board not to exist.

  1. There is hereby established a county board of education in each county of the State of Mississippi. Said county board of education shall consist of five (5) members, one (1) of which, subject to the further provisions of this chapter and except as is otherwise provided in Section 37-5-1(2), shall be elected by the qualified electors of each board of education district of the county. Except as is otherwise provided in Section 37-5-3, each member so elected shall be a resident and qualified elector of the district from which he is elected.
  2. The county board of education shall apportion the county school district into five (5) single member board of education districts. The county board of education shall place upon its minutes the boundaries determined for the new five (5) board of education districts. The board of education of said county shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation within said county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of education of said county, said new district lines will thereafter be effective. The board of education of said county shall reapportion the board of education districts in accordance with the procedure described herein for the original apportionment of districts as soon as practicable after the results of the 2000 decennial census are published and as soon as practicable after every decennial census thereafter.
  3. In counties where the office of “administrative superintendent” as defined in Section 37-6-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, has been abolished, there shall be no county board of education.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-01; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 1; Laws, 1954, ch. 283, § 1; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 1; Laws, 1960, ch. 297, § 1; Laws, 1962, ch. 342, 1987, ch. 307, § 10; Laws, 1988, ch. 444, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 598, § 1, eff July 22, 2002 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 22, 2002, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2002, ch. 598, § 5 and 6.

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment, in (1), substituted “board of education” for “board of supervisors”; and in (2), deleted the first sentence, substituted “board of education ” for “board of supervisors,” four times and substituted “2000” for “1990 ” preceding “decennial census.”

Cross References —

Application of this section to the term of office of members, see §37-5-7.

Election of members from special board of education districts in certain counties, see §§37-5-18,37-5-19.

Discontinuance and abolition of county board of education in certain counties, see §37-7-723.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

County board of education, and its president, as agents of state, may appeal without giving bond. County Board of Education v. Smith, 239 Miss. 53, 121 So. 2d 139, 1960 Miss. LEXIS 266 (Miss. 1960).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

It is the responsibility of the county board of supervisors to reapportion the board of education districts, which responsibility includes the payment of expenses related to that reapportionment. Clearman, Jan. 11, 2002, A.G. Op. #01-0783.

Even if school district boundaries are changed by the board of trustees pursuant to Section 37-5-1, an individual elected to the board on November 5, 2002, should serve the full term of six years and the remaining members of the board should continue to serve their existing terms as well. Pope, Nov. 15, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0647.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Applicability and application of § 2 of Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USCS § 1973) to members of school board. 105 A.L.R. Fed. 254.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 124 et seq.

Law Reviews.

Mississippi and the Voting Rights Act: 1965-1982. 52 Miss. L. J. 803, December 1982.

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-5-3. Residency requirements of members of board; qualifications of electors.

No person who is a resident of the territory embraced within a municipal separate school district or a special municipal separate school district shall be eligible to be a member of the county board of education. Qualified electors residing within a municipal separate school district or special municipal separate school district shall not be eligible to vote or participate in the election of members of the county board of education.

The provisions of this section shall be applicable in the case of a special municipal separate school district and a line consolidated school district of which another county is the home county which together occupy all of the territory of a supervisors district of the county.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-01; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 1; Laws, 1954, ch. 283, § 1; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 1; Laws, 1960, ch. 297, § 1; Laws, 1962, ch. 342, eff from and after passage (approved May 21, 1962).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Applicability and application of § 2 of Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USCS § 1973) to members of school board. 105 A.L.R. Fed. 254.

§ 37-5-5. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1988, ch. 444, § 3, eff from and after August 9, 1988 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the repeal of this section).

[Codes, 1942, 6271-01; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 1; Laws, 1954, ch. 283, § 1; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 1; Laws, 1960, ch. 297, § 1; Laws, 1962, ch. 342]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-5-5 pertained to at-large school board members.

§ 37-5-7. Time of election and terms of office of members of board.

  1. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in May, 1954, an election shall be held in each county in this state in the same manner as general state and county elections are held and conducted, which election shall be held for the purpose of electing the county boards of education established under the provisions of this chapter. At such election, the members of the said board from Supervisors Districts One and Two shall be elected for the term expiring on the first Monday of January, 1957; members of the board from Supervisors Districts Three and Four shall be elected for a term expiring on the first Monday of January, 1959; and the member of the board from Supervisors District Five shall be elected for a term expiring on the first Monday of January, 1955. Except as otherwise provided in subsection (2), all subsequent members of the board shall be elected for a term of six (6) years at the regular general election held on the first Monday in November next preceding the expiration of the term of office of the respective member or members of such board. All members of the county board of education as herein constituted, shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election.
  2. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, in any year in which any county shall elect to utilize the authority contained in Section 37-5-1(2), an election shall be held in each such county in this state for the purpose of electing the county boards of education in such counties. At said election the members of the said county board of education from Districts One and Two shall be elected for a term of four (4) years, the members from Districts Three and Four shall be elected for a term of six (6) years, and the member from District Five shall be elected for a term of two (2) years. Thereafter, members shall be elected at general elections as vacancies occur for terms of six (6) years each. All members of the county board of education shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election.
    1. Current members of the Board of Trustees of the Greenwood Public School District serving on November 1, 2017, shall continue in office as the new County Board of Education of the Greenwood-Leflore School District until their successors are elected as follows:
      1. The two (2) appointed board members of the Greenwood Public School District whose terms are nearest to expiration shall expire on January 1, 2019, and thereafter become permanently elected positions to be filled by persons elected as board members from Supervisors Districts 2 and 3 in a November 2018 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2019, for a term of four (4) years;
      2. The final two (2) appointed board members of the Greenwood Public School District whose terms are the farthest removed from expiration shall expire on January 1, 2020, and thereafter become permanently elected positions to be filled by persons elected as board members from Supervisors Districts 4 and 5 in a November 2019 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2020, for a term of four (4) years; and
      3. One (1) appointed board member of the Greenwood Public School District whose term is next nearest to expiration shall expire on January 1, 2021, and thereafter become a permanently elected position to be filled by a person elected as a board member from Supervisors District 1 in a November 2020 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2021, for a term of four (4) years.
    2. All subsequent members shall be elected for a term of four (4) years at the regular general election held on the first Monday in November next preceding the expiration of the term of office of the respective members, and shall take office on January 1 next succeeding the election.
  3. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2017, an election shall be held in Holmes County for the purpose of electing the county board of education in the new Holmes County Consolidated School District. At the election, the members of the said county board of education shall be elected from single member board of education districts, which shall be consistent with the supervisors district lines in the county, and shall be elected for an initial term of six (6) years. Subsequent elections for the Holmes County Board of Education shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2023 and every four (4) years thereafter at the same time and manner as other general elections are held, and the member shall be elected for a term of four (4) years. All members of the county board of education in the new Holmes County Consolidated School District shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election.
  4. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2023, an election shall be held in Chickasaw County for the purpose of electing the county board of education in the new Chickasaw County School District. The board of supervisors shall declare and designate posts for each member of the new board. At said election, the members of the said county board of education from Posts One and Two shall be elected for a term of four (4) years, the members from Posts Three and Four shall be elected for a term of three (3) years and the member from Post Five shall be elected for a term of two (2) years. Thereafter, members shall be elected at general elections as vacancies occur for terms of four (4) years each. All members of the county board of education in the new Chickasaw County School District shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-02; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 2; Laws, 1954, ch. 283, § 2; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 2; Laws, 1988, ch. 444, § 2; Laws, 2016, ch. 464, § 3; Laws, 2016, ch. 466, § 3; Laws, 2017, ch. 436, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 3 of ch. 464, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:02 a.m.), amended this section. Section 3 of ch. 466, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:10 a.m.), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments, pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the August 5, 2016, meeting of the Committee.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2016 amendment (ch. 464) added (3).

The second 2016 amendment (ch. 466) added (4).

The 2017 amendment inserted “two” preceding “(2) years” at the end of the second sentence of (2); and added (5).

Cross References —

Greenwood-Leflore School District, see §37-7-104.6.

Holms County Consolidated School District, see §37-7-104.7.

Chickasaw County School District, see §37-7-104.8.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Even if school district boundaries are changed by the board of trustees pursuant to Section 37-5-1, an individual elected to the board on November 5, 2002, should serve the full term of six years and the remaining members of the board should continue to serve their existing terms as well. Pope, Nov. 15, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0647.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 76.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 159, 173-175.

§ 37-5-9. Nominating petition; election; runoff election.

The name of any qualified elector who is a candidate for the county board of education shall be placed on the ballot used in the general elections by the county election commissioners, provided that the candidate files with the county election commissioners, not more than ninety (90) days and not less than sixty (60) days prior to the date of such general election, a petition of nomination signed by not less than fifty (50) qualified electors of the county residing within each supervisors district. Where there are less than one hundred (100) qualified electors in said supervisors district, it shall only be required that said petition of nomination be signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of such supervisors district. The candidate in each supervisors district who receives the majority of votes cast in the district shall be declared elected. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast at the election, a runoff shall be held between the two (2) candidates receiving the highest number of votes in the first election. The runoff election, in the event that such is necessary, shall be held three (3) weeks after the first election.

When any member of the county board of education is to be elected from the county at large under the provisions of this chapter, then the petition required by the preceding paragraph hereof shall be signed by the required number of qualified electors residing in any part of the county outside of the territory embraced within a municipal separate school district or special municipal separate school district. The candidate who receives the majority of votes cast in the election shall be declared elected. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast at the election, a runoff shall be held between the two (2) candidates receiving the highest number of votes in the first election. The runoff election, in the event that such is necessary, shall be held three (3) weeks after the first election.

In no case shall any qualified elector residing within a municipal separate school district or special municipal separate school district be eligible to sign a petition of nomination for any candidate for the county board of education under any of the provisions of this section.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-03; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 3; Laws, 1954, ch. 283, § 3; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 3; Laws, 1978, ch. 392, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 470, § 1 (see Editor’s Note); Laws, 2019, ch. 308, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated August 28, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the change in the general election date provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009. As for the proposed changes from a plurality vote to a majority vote requirement for county school board members, for trustees for certain municipal separate school districts and for trustees for special municipal school districts, and the requirement that a runoff election be held three weeks after the election if no candidate received a majority, the U.S. Attorney General requested additional information from the state. After review of the information provided by the state, the U.S. Attorney General concluded that the state had not met its burden of showing that the proposed changes had neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect, and by letter dated March 24, 2010, objected to the proposed change from plurality to majority vote and the runoff requirement provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment rewrote the section.

The 2019 amendment, in the first and second paragraphs, substituted “majority of votes” for “highest number of votes,” and added the last two sentences.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Applicability and application of § 2 of Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USCS § 1973) to members of school board. 105 A.L.R. Fed. 254.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 168-171.

§§ 37-5-11 through 37-5-17. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1988, ch. 444, § 3, eff from and after June 15, 1988 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the repeal of this section).

§37-5-11. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-03.5; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 4; Laws, 1960, ch. 298, §§ 1-3; Laws, 1966, ch. 404, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 396]

§37-5-13. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-03.5; Laws, 1958, ch. 309, § 4; Laws, 1960, ch. 298, §§ 1-3; Laws, 1966, ch. 404, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 396]

§37-5-15. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-03.7; Laws, 1966, ch. 431, §§ 1-8; Laws, 1968, ch. 397, § 1]

§37-5-17. [Codes, 1942, §§ 6271-21, 6271-22, 6271-23, 6271-24, 6271-25, 6271-26; Laws, 1966, ch. 428, §§ 1-6]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-5-11 pertained to the election of county board of education members at large, and the manner of holding an election.

Former §37-5-13 authorized the election of members of the county board of education at large.

Former §37-5-15 pertained to the election of county at-large members in counties within the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District.

Former §37-5-17 authorized the election of members from county at large in counties with a population between 47,000 and 50,000.

§ 37-5-18. Election of members from special board of education districts in certain counties.

In any county bordering on the Mississippi Sound and having therein at least four (4) municipal separate school districts, each member of the county board of education established by Section 37-5-1 for such county shall be elected from and shall be a resident and qualified elector in a special district determined in the following manner:

The board of education of such a county shall apportion the county into five (5) board of education districts in the territory outside the municipal separate school districts and these board of education districts shall be divided as nearly equal as possible according to population, incumbency and other factors heretofore pronounced by the courts. The board of education shall place upon its minutes the boundaries determined for the new five (5) board of education districts. The board of education of said county shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation within said county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of education of said county, said new district lines will thereafter be effective.

All incumbents now holding office within the district as presently constituted shall continue holding their respective offices provided they reside within the new district for the remainder of the term of office to which they have heretofore been elected and all members from the respective district shall be elected from the new board of education district constituted as herein provided in the same manner provided by law for the election of members of the county board of education. Any vacancies in the office, whether occasioned by redistricting or by other cause, shall be filled in the manner presently provided by law for the filling of vacancies.

HISTORY: Laws, 1976, ch. 322; Laws, 2002, ch. 598, § 2, eff July 22, 2002 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 22, 2002, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2002, ch. 598 §§ 5 and 6.

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment substituted “board of education” for “board of supervisors” four times.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

§ 37-5-19. Filling of vacancies on board.

Vacancies in the membership of the county board of education shall be filled by appointment, within sixty (60) days after the vacancy occurs, by the remaining members of the county board of education. Said appointee shall be selected from the qualified electors of the district in which the vacancy occurs, and shall serve until the first Monday of January next succeeding the next general election, at which general election a member shall be elected to fill the remainder of the unexpired term in the same manner and with the same qualifications applicable to the election of a member for the full term. In the event the school district is under conservatorship and no members of the county board of education remain in office, the Governor shall call a special election to fill the vacancies and said election will be conducted by the county election commission.

In the event the vacancy occurs more than five (5) months prior to the next general election and the remaining members of the county board of education are unable to agree upon an individual to be appointed, any two (2) of the remaining members may certify such disagreement to the county election commission. Upon the receipt of such a certificate by the county election commission, or any member thereof, the commission shall hold a special election to fill the vacancy, which said election, notice thereof and ballot shall be controlled by the laws concerning special elections to fill vacancies in county or county district offices. The person elected at such a special election shall serve for the remainder of the unexpired term.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-04; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 4; Laws, 1960, ch. 299; Laws, 2013, ch. 331, § 2; Laws, 2013, ch. 363, § 2, eff July 16, 2013 (the date of the United States Attorney General’s response to the submission of this section under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965).

Editor’s Notes —

This section was amended by two bills in 2013. The effective date of each of the two bills that amended this section, Chapter 331 (House Bill No. 975) and Chapter 363 (Senate Bill No. 2779), is “from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.” However, after the bills were approved, the United States Supreme Court, in the case of Shelby County v. Holder (June 25, 2013), struck down the coverage formula that determined what jurisdictions are subject to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, so the coverage formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance under Section 5.

Because of the Shelby County decision, the United States Attorney General is not making any determinations under Section 5 on voting or election changes made by states. The Supreme Court did not strike down Section 5, so it is still in effect. Chapter 331 was submitted to the United States Attorney General before the Shelby County decision was rendered. In a letter dated July 9, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 331 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 331, so Chapter 331 became effective on the date of the response letter from the United States Attorney General, July 9, 2013.

Chapter 363 was not submitted before the Shelby County decision, but the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office submitted Chapter 363 to the United States Attorney General, in order to technically meet the requirements of Section 5 and fulfill the condition in the effective date of the bill, which will allow the bill to take effect.

By letter dated July 16, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 363 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 363, so Chapter 363 became effective from and after July 16, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter. Because that date is later than the date of the response letter for Chapter 331, the version of this section in Chapter 363 is the controlling version of this section.

As set out above, this section reflects the amendments to the section by Chapter 363.

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment (ch. 331) added the last sentence in the first paragraph of the second version of the section.

The 2013 amendment (ch. 363) added the last sentence of the first paragraph.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Mississippi Supreme Court has held on numerous occasions that terms of statute dealing with specific subject control over terms of statute dealing with subject in general; as 23-15-839 is general statute, provisions of 37-5-19 are controlling as to procedure that must be followed to fill vacancy on county board of education. Crawford, August 29, 1990, A.G. Op. #90-0637.

Interim school board appointee, who was appointed to serve until first Monday of January, following special election to fill vacancy in accordance with Miss. Code Section 37-5-19, would likewise be authorized to hold over until his or her successor is selected and qualified to assume duties; therefore, interim appointee whose term expired on January 4, was entitled to continue to serve on school board until vacancy is again filled by board; however, in order to avoid any possible conflict of interest, it is suggested that interim appointee not participate in filling of vacancy. Berkley, Jan. 6, 1993, A.G. Op. #92-1001.

If two members of school board disagree with suggested appointee to board, and they certify said disagreement to county election commission, interim appointee would be authorized to hold over until special election is held in accordance with Miss Code Section 37-5-19. Berkley, Jan. 6, 1993, A.G.Op #92-1001.

Where vacancy is created on school board, appointment is to be filled in accordance with Miss. Code Section 37-5-19, and individual appointed to fill said vacancy will serve until new election can be held. Rohman, Feb. 2, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0085.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 76.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 159, 173-175.

§§ 37-5-21 through 37-5-41. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 44, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§37-5-21. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-05; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 5; Laws, 1955, Ex Sess ch. 47, § 1; Laws, 1960, ch. 308, § 2; Laws, 1962, ch. 343; Laws, 1966, ch. 405, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 523, § 1; Laws, 1972, ch. 392, § 1; Laws, 1975, ch. 488; Laws, 1979, ch. 449; Laws, 1983, ch. 544]

§37-5-23. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 7]

§37-5-25. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 7]

§37-5-27. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-01; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 1; Laws, 1954, ch. 267, § 1; Laws, 1962, ch. 378]

§37-5-29. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 6]

§37-5-31. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-03; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 3; Laws, 1985, ch. 391, § 3; Laws, 1985, ch. 460, § 1]

§37-5-33. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 7]

§37-5-35. [Codes, 1930, § 6844; 1942, § 6673; Laws, 1928, Ex Sess ch. 34; Laws, 1930, ch. 278]

§37-5-37. [Codes, 1930, § 6789; 1942, § 6632; Laws, 1924, ch. 283; Laws 1930, ch. 278; Laws, 1934, ch. 264]

§37-5-39. [Laws, 1973, ch. 415, § 1]

§37-5-41. [Laws, 1974, ch. 355; Laws, 1985, ch. 474, § 46; Laws, 1986, ch. 438, § 12]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-5-21 provided for compensation of members of the county board of education.

Former §37-5-23 pertained to bonding of the county board of education.

Former §37-5-25 related to the recording of votes of members of the county board of education.

Former §37-5-27 related to meetings of a county board of education.

Former §37-5-29 related to the general powers and duties of county boards of education.

Former §37-5-31 related to control of school funds by county boards of education.

Former §37-5-33 permitted a county board of education to act as a central purchasing agency.

Former §37-5-35 permitted a county board of education to set up and operate orphanage public schools.

Former §37-5-37 authorized a county board of education to establish schools for Indians.

Former §37-5-39 authorized school boards to turn recreational areas under their control over to county boards of supervisors or municipalities during the summer months.

Former §37-5-41 authorized county boards of education and all public school boards of education to purchase liability insurance to cover their official actions.

County Superintendents of Education

§ 37-5-61. Creation; functions generally; election and term of office [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

  1. There shall be a county superintendent of education in each county.
  2. Said superintendent shall serve as the executive secretary of the county board of education, but shall have no vote in the proceedings before the board and no voice in fixing the policies thereof.
  3. In addition, said superintendent shall be the director of all schools in the county school district which are outside the municipal separate school districts.
  4. Said superintendent shall be elected at the same time and in the same manner as other county officers are elected and shall hold office for a term of four (4) years. However, in the event that a vacancy in the office of the superintendent of schools elected at the November 2015 general election shall occur before January 1, 2019, the office of superintendent of school shall immediately become an appointed position, and the local school board shall appoint the superintendent of the school district.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, §§ 6271-08, 6271-10, 6274-05; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, §§ 8, 10; ch. 16, § 5; Laws, 1954, ch. 275; Laws, 1958, ch. 297; Laws, 1960, ch. 308, § 3; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; ch. 407, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch. 398, § 1; ch. 399; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 497, § 49; Laws, 2017, ch. 301, § 3, eff from and after passage (approved Jan. 17, 2017).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2013 amendment inserted “school district which are” following “of all schools in the county” in (3).

The 2017 amendment, effective January 17, 2017, added the last sentence of (4).

Cross References —

Constitutional authorization of office of county superintendent of public education, see Miss. Const. Art. 8, § 204.

Grounds and procedure for removal of county superintendent, see §37-1-7.

Certain counties excepted from the provisions of subsections (1) and (4) of this section, see §37-5-69.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Relationship to other laws.

1. In general.

Candidate was not eligible to run for the office of county superintendent of education because he was a resident of a separate school district; the candidate did not present any evidence that he was a qualified elector of the county school district, the county superintendent of education served as the director of all schools within the county school district, which were outside the separate school district where the candidate resided. Basil v. Browning, 175 So.3d 1289, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 543 (Miss. 2015).

School Superintendent was liable, as well as county School Board members, for violating conflict of interest statute, although Superintendent was prohibited by statute from participating in decisions such as one underlying alleged conflict of interest in this case, because §37-11-27 names Superintendent as being among persons prohibited from making, authorizing, or entering any such contract; additionally, record reflected, without contradiction, that Superintendent did in fact execute contract and recommend payment of moneys under it. State ex rel. Pittman v. Ladner, 512 So. 2d 1271, 1987 Miss. LEXIS 2787 (Miss. 1987).

2. Relationship to other laws.

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USCS § 1973c) is applicable to the 1966 amendment of this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08], and approval of that amendment cannot be implemented until the approval of the Attorney General of the United States has been obtained. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 [42 USCS § 1973c] which prevents the enforcement of “any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice or procedure with respect to voting” different from that in effect on Nov. 1, 1964, unless the state of political subdivision complies with one of the section’s approval procedures, applied to the 1966 amendment to this section [Code, 1942, § 6271-08] providing that in 11 specified counties the county superintendent of education should be appointed by the board of education. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., School and School Districts §§ 163-167 et seq.

Law Reviews.

Mississippi and the Voting Rights Act: 1965-1982. 52 Miss. L. J. 803, December 1982.

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-5-63. Establishment of position as appointive office [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 37-5-61, the office of county superintendent of education may be made appointive in any county in the manner herein provided. Upon the filing of a petition signed by not less than twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of such county, it shall be the duty of the board of supervisors of such county, within sixty (60) days after the filing of such petition, to call a special election at which there shall be submitted to the qualified electors of such county the question of whether the office of county superintendent of education of said county shall continue to be elective or shall be filled by appointment by the county board of education of said county. However, where a Class 3 county having an area in excess of eight hundred twenty-five (825) square miles has a county unit school system comprising less than an entire county, the petition shall only be signed by electors residing within the county unit school district and only electors of said district shall vote on the proposition of appointing the county superintendent of education.

The order calling such special election shall designate the date upon which same shall be held and a notice of such election, signed by the clerk of the board of supervisors, shall be published once a week for at least three (3) consecutive weeks in at least one newspaper published in such county. The first publication of such notice shall be made not less than twenty-one (21) days prior to the date fixed for such election and the last publication shall be made not more than seven (7) days prior to such date. If no newspaper is published in such county then such notice shall be given by publication of same for the required time in some newspaper having a general circulation in such county and, in addition, by posting a copy of such notice for at least twenty-one (21) days next preceding such election at three (3) public places in such county, one of which shall be at the door of the county courthouse in each judicial district.

Said election shall be held, as far as is practicable, in the same manner as other elections are held in such county and all qualified electors of the county may vote therein. If a majority of such qualified electors who vote in such election shall vote in favor of the appointment of the county superintendent of education by the county board of education then, at the expiration of the term of the county superintendent of education then in office, the county superintendent of education of said county shall not be elected but shall thereafter be appointed by the county board of education for a term of not more than four (4) years; otherwise, said office shall remain elective.

No special election shall be held in any county under the provisions of this section more often than once in every four (4) years, and no change from the elective to the appointive method of the selection of the county superintendent of education shall become effective except at the expiration of the term of the county superintendent of education in office at the time such election is held.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 8; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch. 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved April 1, 1970).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Cross References —

Constitutional authorization of office of county superintendent of public education, see Miss. Const Art. 8, § 204.

Certain counties excepted from the provisions of this section, see §37-5-69.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USC § 1973c) is applicable to the 1966 amendment of this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08], and approval of that amendment cannot be implemented until the approval of the Attorney General of the United States has been obtained. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 [42 USC § 1973c] which prevents the enforcement of “any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice or procedure with respect to voting” different from that in effect on Nov. 1, 1964, unless the state or political subdivision complies with one of the section’s approval procedures, applied to the 1966 amendment to this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08] providing that in 11 specified counties the county superintendent of education should be appointed by the board of education. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 168-171.

§ 37-5-65. Reestablishment of position as elective office [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

Where the office of county superintendent of education has been made appointive under the provisions of Section 37-5-63, the same may thereafter be made elective in such county by a petition filed and election held in the same manner provided in said section, all of the provisions of which shall be applicable to such proceedings. Where such change is made from the appointive method back to the elective method the same shall become effective at the date for the commencement of the term of office of other county offices next succeeding such election, and the county superintendent of education of such county shall be elected at the preceding election at the same time and in the same manner as other county officers are elected. Nothing herein shall be construed, however, to authorize the calling of a special election under any of the provisions of this section more often than once in any four years.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 8; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch. 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved April 1, 1970).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Cross References —

Certain counties excepted from the provisions of this section, see §37-5-69.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USC § 1973c) is applicable to the 1966 amendment of this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08], and approval of that amendment cannot be implemented until the approval of the Attorney General of the United States has been obtained. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 [42 USC § 1973c] which prevents the enforcement of “any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice or procedure with respect to voting” different from that in effect on Nov. 1, 1964, unless the state or political subdivision complies with one of the section’s approval procedures, applied to the 1966 amendment to this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08] providing that in 11 specified counties the county superintendent of education should be appointed by the board of education. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 168-171.

§ 37-5-66. Appointment of superintendent by county board of education in certain counties.

Effective with the term of office beginning January 1, 2016, in any Class 1 county bordering the Mississippi River having a population in excess of thirty thousand (30,000), according to the 2010 federal decennial census, wherein Mississippi Highway 49 and U.S. Highway 61 intersect, the county superintendent of education shall be appointed by the county board of education.

HISTORY: Laws, 2015, ch. 458, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 20, 2015).

§ 37-5-67. Authorization of appointment of county superintendent by county board of education in certain counties [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

The county superintendent of education shall be appointed by the county board of education:

In any county of the first class lying wholly within a levee district and within which there is situated a city of more than forty thousand (40,000) population according to the last federal decennial census;

In any county bordering on the Gulf of Mexico or Mississippi Sound, having therein a test facility operated by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration;

In any county bordering on the Alabama state line, traversed by the Tombigbee River, and in which is situated a senior institution of higher learning;

In any county of the second class wherein Interstate Highway 55 and State Highway 22 intersect and which is also traversed in whole or in part by U. S. Highways 49 and 51, and State Highways 16, 17 and 43 and the Natchez Trace;

In any Class 4 county having population in excess of twenty-five thousand (25,000) according to the 1960 federal census, traversed by U. S. Highway 55 and wherein State Highways 12 and 17 intersect;

In any county created after 1916 through which the Yazoo River flows;

In any Class 4 county having a land area of six hundred ninety-five (695) square miles, bordering on the State of Alabama, wherein the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit was signed and wherein U. S. Highway 45 and State Highway 14 intersect;

In any county bordering on the Mississippi River wherein lies the campus of a land-grant institution or lands contiguous thereto owned by the institution;

In any county lying within the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, bordering upon the Mississippi River, and having a county seat with a population in excess of twenty-one thousand (21,000) according to the federal census of 1960;

In any Class 3 county wherein is partially located a national forest and wherein U. S. Highway 51 and State Highway 28 intersect, with a 1960 federal census of twenty-seven thousand fifty-one (27,051) and a 1963 assessed valuation of Sixteen Million Six Hundred Ninety-two Thousand Three Hundred Four Dollars ($16,692,304.00); and

In any Class 1 county wherein U. S. Highway 49 and State Highway 16 intersect, having a land area in excess of nine hundred thirty square miles.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 8; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved April 1, 1970).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Cross References —

Constitutional authorization of office of county superintendent of public education, see Miss. Const. Art. 8, § 204.

Certain counties excepted from the provisions of this section, see §37-5-69.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 USC § 1973c) is applicable to the 1966 amendment of this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08], and approval of that amendment cannot be implemented until the approval of the Attorney General of the United States has been obtained. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

Section 5 of the Federal Voting Rights Act of 1965 [42 USC § 1973c] which prevents the enforcement of “any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice or procedure with respect to voting” different from that in effect on Nov. 1, 1964, unless the state or political subdivision complies with one of the section’s approval procedures, applied to the 1966 amendment to this section [Code 1942, § 6271-08] providing that in 11 specified counties the county superintendent of education should be appointed by the board of education. Allen v. State Bd. of Elections, 393 U.S. 544, 89 S. Ct. 817, 22 L. Ed. 2d 1, 1969 U.S. LEXIS 2378 (U.S. 1969), limited, Ryder v. United States, 515 U.S. 177, 115 S. Ct. 2031, 132 L. Ed. 2d 136, 1995 U.S. LEXIS 4039 (U.S. 1995).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Since the amendments to this section provided for by Chapter 406 of Laws of 1966, Chapters 384 and 398 of Laws of 1968, and Chapter 372 of Laws of 1972 were never approved pursuant to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, they cannot be in effect; therefore, the office of superintendent of education of Hancock County, which county is covered by subsection (b) of this section, remains an elective office. Bourgeois, Nov. 5, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0748.

Should provisions, such as those contained in this section, pending before the U.S. Department of Justice that mandate changing from elected to appointed superintendents of education in certain counties ever be approved by said department, such offices would, become appointive upon the expiration of the then current terms of the affected elected superintendents. Seal, Apr. 23, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0166.

Should provisions, such as those contained in this section, be approved under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, no election would be required to effectuate a change from elected to appointed superintendents in the affected counties. Seal, Apr. 23, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0166.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 168-171.

§ 37-5-68. County superintendent to be appointed in certain counties; referendum on question of changing from elective method.

Effective with the term of office beginning on January 1, 2012, the county superintendent of education shall be appointed by the county board of education in any county wherein is located the state’s oldest state-supported university, having a population in excess of thirty-eight thousand (38,000) according to the 2000 federal decennial census and in which Mississippi Highways 6 and 7 intersect. Provided, however, if at any time prior to January 1, 2010, or ninety (90) days following August 10, 2009, whichever is earlier, a petition signed by not less than twenty percent (20%) or one thousand five hundred (1,500), whichever is less, of the registered, qualified electors of such county, exclusive of the municipal separate school district boundaries, is filed with the county board of education requesting that a referendum be called on the question of changing from the elective method of selecting the county superintendent of education to the appointive method, then the county board of education shall adopt, not later than the next regular meeting, a resolution calling a referendum to be called and held within the county school district boundaries upon the question. The referendum shall be scheduled for not more than six (6) weeks after the date such petition is filed with the board. When a referendum has been called, notice of the referendum shall be published at least five (5) days per week, unless the only newspaper published in the county school district is published less than five (5) days per week, for at least three (3) consecutive weeks, in at least one (1) newspaper published in the county school district. The notice shall be no less than one-fourth (1/4) page in size, and the type used shall be no smaller than eighteen (18) point and surrounded by a one-fourth-inch solid black border. The notice may not be placed in that portion of the newspaper where legal notices and classified advertisements appear. The first publication of the notice shall be made not less than twenty-one (21) days before the date fixed for the referendum, and the last publication shall be made not more than seven (7) days before that date. If no newspaper is published in the county school district, then the notice shall be published in a newspaper having a general circulation in the county school district. The referendum shall be held, as far as is practicable, in the same manner as other referendums and elections are held in the county. At the referendum, all registered, qualified electors of the county school district, exclusive of the municipal separate school district boundaries, may vote. The ballots used at the referendum shall have printed thereon a brief statement of the purpose of the referendum and the words “FOR CHANGING FROM THE ELECTIVE TO THE APPOINTIVE METHOD OF SELECTING THE COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF EDUCATION,” and “AGAINST CHANGING FROM THE ELECTIVE TO THE APPOINTIVE METHOD OF SELECTING THE COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF EDUCATION.” The voter shall vote by placing a cross (X) or checkmark (Π) opposite his choice on the proposition. If a majority of the registered, qualified electors of the county school district who vote in the referendum vote in favor of the question, then the change in selection method shall be approved. However, if a majority of the registered, qualified electors who vote in the referendum vote against the question, the change in selection method shall not be approved.

HISTORY: Laws, 2009, ch. 431, § 1, eff Aug. 10, 2009 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the enactment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

On August 10, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the enactment of this section by Laws of 2009, ch. 431.

§ 37-5-69. Abolition of office in certain counties; exception of certain counties from provisions concerning choosing of superintendent [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

In any county organizing a countywide municipal separate school district after the first day of January, 1965, the office of county superintendent of education is hereby abolished. There is excepted from the provisions of subsections (1) and (4) of Section 37-5-61, Sections 37-5-63 through 37-5-67, subsection (1) of Section 37-5-73, and Section 37-5-75, any county of the first class which has a land area of less than four hundred fifty square miles, and has located therein a municipality of more than fifteen thousand population, according to the 1950 federal decennial census.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 8; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch. 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved April 1, 1970).

Editor’s Notes —

Section37-5-73 referred to in this section was repealed by Laws of 1986, ch. 492, § 84, eff from and after July 1, 1987. For present similar provisions, see §§37-5-71 and37-9-13.

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Cross References —

Constitutional authorization for abolition of office of county superintendent of education, see Miss. Const. Art. 8, § 204.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

§ 37-5-71. Selection and qualifications of superintendent; persons disqualified from participating in election of superintendent [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

  1. The county superintendents of education shall be elected in the manner prescribed by the provisions of this chapter, unless the school district is being reconstituted as provided in Section 37-17-13 or unless such office be made appointive as provided in this chapter, in which case the county superintendent shall be appointed by the county board of education or by the trustees of a separate school district embracing an entire county with a population of fifteen thousand (15,000) or less, as provided in subsection (2) of Section 37-7-203. However, in the event that a vacancy in the elective office of the superintendent of schools elected at the November 2015 general election shall occur before January 1, 2019, the office of superintendent of school shall immediately become an appointed position, and the local school board shall appoint the superintendent of the school district. In all cases he shall have such qualifications as prescribed by Section 37-9-13 and receive such compensation as established under Section 37-9-37.
  2. All qualified electors residing within any municipal separate or special municipal separate school district shall not vote in the election for the county superintendent of education:
    1. In all counties of the second class which have a population, according to the 1960 federal decennial census of at least thirty-three thousand (33,000) and less than thirty-four thousand (34,000), and having a city located therein which is the Southern Division of the A.T. S.F. Railroad Company;
    2. In all counties of the fourth class which have a population, according to the 1960 federal decennial census, in excess of twenty-six thousand (26,000) and less than twenty-seven thousand (27,000), and having located therein the Mississippi State University of Agriculture and Applied Science;
    3. In all counties of the first class which have a population, according to the 1960 federal decennial census, in excess of forty-six thousand (46,000) and less than forty-seven thousand (47,000), and having located therein the Mississippi University for Women;
    4. In any county bordering on the Mississippi Sound and having a population in excess of one hundred thousand (100,000), according to the 1960 federal decennial census, and having an assessed valuation in excess of Seventy Million Dollars ($70,000,000.00);
    5. In any county having a population in excess of eight thousand (8,000) and less than nine thousand (9,000), and having an assessed valuation in excess of Five Million Dollars ($5,000,000.00) but less than Six Million Dollars ($6,000,000.00) in 1960;
    6. In any county having a population in excess of twenty-two thousand (22,000) and less than twenty-three thousand (23,000) in 1960, and having a total assessed valuation in excess of Thirteen Million Dollars ($13,000,000.00) in 1960;
    7. In any county having a population in excess of fifty-nine thousand (59,000) but less than sixty thousand (60,000), according to the 1960 federal decennial census;
    8. In any county bordered on the east by the Alabama line and on the south by the Mississippi Sound;
    9. In any county where Mississippi Highway 35 crosses U.S. Highway 80 and whose population, according to the 1960 regular census, was between twenty-one thousand (21,000) and twenty-two thousand (22,000), and in which there are located four (4) or more chicken packing plants, one (1) zipper plant and one or more factories manufacturing Sunbeam electrical appliances;
    10. In any county having a population of twenty-six thousand one hundred ninety-eight (26,198) according to the 1970 census wherein Highways 51 and 84 intersect;
    11. In any county having a municipal separate school district lying therein, having a population in excess of twenty-one thousand (21,000) but less than twenty-one thousand five hundred (21,500), according to the 1960 decennial census, and having a combined assessed valuation in 1963 in excess of Sixteen Million Nine Hundred Thousand Dollars ($16,900,000.00) but less than Seventeen Million Dollars ($17,000,000.00) according to the State Tax Commission’s compilation;
    12. In any county where Mississippi Highway 15 crosses Mississippi Highway 16, whose population was more than twenty thousand (20,000) and less than twenty-one thousand (21,000), according to the regular 1960 census, and within which there is located a Choctaw Indian reservation and school operated by the United States government;
    13. In any county where U.S. Highway 45W Alternate intersects Mississippi Highway 50, and having a population of eighteen thousand nine hundred thirty-three (18,933), according to the 1960 federal census;
    14. In any county having a population in excess of forty thousand five hundred (40,500), according to the 1960 federal decennial census, wherein U.S. Highways 78 and 45 intersect, and wherein there is a United States fish hatchery;
    15. In any county being traversed by Mississippi Highway 15 and U.S. Interstate Highway 20;
    16. In all counties wherein there is located a national military park and a national cemetery;
    17. In any county where U.S. Highway 82 crosses U.S. Interstate Highway 55 and having a population of twelve thousand three hundred eighty-seven (12,387) according to the 1990 federal decennial census;
    18. In any county where U.S. Highway 49E and U.S. Highway 82 intersect, and having a population of thirty-seven thousand three hundred forty-one (37,341) according to the 1990 federal decennial census;
    19. In any county bordering the Mississippi River on the west and with a population of less than thirty-one thousand (31,000), according to the 2000 federal decennial census, and with a county seat in which U.S. Highway 49 and U.S. Highway 61 intersect.

      In any such county, however, the county superintendent of education may be a resident of a municipal separate school district or special municipal separate school district.

  3. The qualified electors residing within the municipal separate school districts shall not participate in the election of the county superintendent of education:
    1. In any county having a population of more than twenty-seven thousand (27,000) and less than twenty-eight thousand (28,000) and containing therein a municipality having a population in excess of three thousand (3,000), according to the 1960 federal decennial census;
    2. In any Class 1 county wherein is located a state-supported university and a National Guard camp, and in which Interstate Highway 59 and U.S. Highway 49 intersect;
    3. In any Class 4 county having two (2) judicial districts, wherein is partially located a national forest, and wherein Mississippi Highways 8 and 15 intersect;
    4. In any Class 2 county, the southern boundary of which partially borders on the State of Louisiana, traversed by U.S. Highway 98 which intersects Mississippi Highway 13, with a land area of five hundred fifty (550) square miles and having a population of twenty-three thousand two hundred ninety-three (23,293) in the 1960 federal decennial census;
    5. In any county bordering on the Gulf of Mexico or the Mississippi Sound having therein a test facility operated by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration;
    6. In any county having a population in excess of twenty-seven thousand one hundred seventy-nine (27,179) according to the 1970 federal decennial census, wherein U.S. Highways 45 and 72 intersect; and
    7. In any Class 1 county bordering on the Pearl River in which U.S. Highway 80 intersects Mississippi Highway 18 and having a population, according to the federal decennial census of 1970, of forty-three thousand nine hundred thirty-three (43,933).
  4. The county superintendent of education, with the approval of the county board of education by its first having adopted a resolution of approval and spread upon its minutes, shall be elected from the county at large, exclusive of the municipal separate school district boundaries:
    1. In any county bordering on the State of Tennessee having a land area of seven hundred ten (710) square miles, wherein is located part of a national forest, and wherein U.S. Highway 78 and Mississippi Highway 7 intersect;
    2. In any Class 4 county wherein is located the state’s oldest state-supported university, in which Mississippi Highways 6 and 7 intersect. Provided, however, that if the method of selecting the county superintendent of education in such county is changed from an elective method to an appointive method, pursuant to the provisions of Section 37-5-68, this paragraph (b) shall stand repealed; and
    3. In any county having a population in excess of seventeen thousand (17,000) and less than eighteen thousand (18,000), according to the 1970 federal decennial census, wherein Mississippi Highways 6 and 9 intersect.
  5. In any county having a municipality of between forty-nine thousand (49,000) and fifty thousand (50,000) population according to the 1960 federal census, and adjoining the Alabama line, wherein U.S. Highways 80 and 45 intersect, the qualified electors residing within any municipal separate school district shall not participate in the election of the county superintendent of education, and such county superintendent of education shall not be a resident of a municipal separate school district.
  6. In any county traversed by the Natchez Trace Parkway wherein U.S. Highway 45 and Mississippi Highway 4 intersect and having a population of seventeen thousand nine hundred forty-nine (17,949) according to the 1960 federal census, the qualified electors residing within any municipal separate school district shall not participate in the election of the county superintendent of education, and such county superintendent of education shall not be a resident of a municipal separate school district.

HISTORY: Laws, 1978, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1980, ch. 398, § 1; Laws, 1981, ch. 317, § 1; Laws, 1992, ch. 396 § 2; Laws, 2000, ch. 506, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 552, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 431, § 2; Laws, 2012, ch. 525, § 3; Laws, 2017, ch. 301, § 4, eff from and after passage (approved Jan. 17, 2017).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated August 11, 2000, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2000, ch. 506, § 1.

On August 10, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2009, ch. 431.

By letter dated September 24, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Chapter 525, Laws of 2012.

Section 27-3-4 provides that the term “State Tax Commission” shall mean the Department of Revenue.

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment substituted “as established under Section 37-9-37” for “as prescribed by Section 37-9-13, if he is elected, or an amount established under Section 37-9-37, if he is appointed” in (1); and added (2)(q) and (r).

The 2006 amendment added (2)(s).

The 2009 amendment added the last sentence in (4)(b).

The 2012 amendment inserted “unless the school district is being reconstituted as provided in Section 37-17-13” in the first sentence of (1).

The 2017 amendment, effective January 17, 2017, added the next-to-last sentence of (1).

Cross References —

Residency requirements of electors of county boards of education generally, see §37-5-3.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. Eligibility.

For counties not identified in subsection (2), qualified electors of a municipal separate school district or special municipal separate school district are not eligible to run for the office of county superintendent of education. Basil v. Browning, 175 So.3d 1289, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 543 (Miss. 2015).

Candidate was not eligible to run for the office of county superintendent of education because he was a resident of a separate school district; the candidate did not present any evidence that he was a qualified elector of the county school district, the county superintendent of education served as the director of all schools within the county school district, which were outside the separate school district where the candidate resided. Basil v. Browning, 175 So.3d 1289, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 543 (Miss. 2015).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

If a School District is not a municipal separate or special municipal separate school district then while the resident voters of the municipal separate and special municipal separate school districts are prevented from voting in the superintendent of education election by subsection (2)(a) of this section, there is no prohibition against the County voters who reside within that School District voting in the election. Chamberlin, February 1, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0018.

An interim superintendent of education, whether elected or appointed, must be a county resident and must meet the same qualifications provided for in Miss. Code Section 37-9-13 for other superintendents. Johnson, Aug. 8, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0227.

A qualified elector and resident of the municipal separate school district in Pontotoc County may not be a candidate for the office of county superintendent of education provided the county board of education has in fact adopted a resolution of approval of such method of election for that office; if the board has not adopted the required resolution, a qualified elector and resident of the school district could be a candidate for the office of superintendent of education provided he or she meets all other qualifications to hold said office. Austin, Mar. 7, 2003, A.G. Op. #03-0116.

Qualified electors of Holmes County who reside within the municipal separate school district are statutorily entitled to vote in the election of the county superintendent of education. Hart, July 7, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-1313.

Residents of the Yazoo City Municipal School District are not permitted to vote in any election for the Superintendent of Education for the Yazoo County School District. Clark, Oct. 31, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0565.

Move by the superintendent of education for a county school district within city limits would not disqualify him as the county superintendent. Burrell, Oct. 27, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0535.

A qualified elector of Alcorn County who resides within a municipal separate school district is not eligible to be a candidate for Alcorn County Superintendent of Education, as described in Miss. Code Ann. §37-5-71(3)(f). Follin-King, February 9, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00058, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 13.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 168-171.

§ 37-5-73. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 84, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

[Codes, 1942, §§ 6271-08, 6271-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, §§ 8, 9; Laws, 1957, Ex Sess ch. 14; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-5-73 related to qualifications of a superintendent. For present similar provisions, see §§37-5-71,37-9-13.

§ 37-5-75. Filling of vacancy in office [Repealed effective January 1, 2019].

If a vacancy shall occur in the elective office of the county superintendent of education elected at the November 2015 general election before January 1, 2019, the office of superintendent of school shall immediately become an appointed position, and such vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the county board of education. In such case the person so appointed by the county board of education shall hold office under the terms and for the duration of the employment contracted issued by the board of education under the authority of Section 37-9-25.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6271-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 8; Laws, 1962, chs. 344, 345, 346; Laws, 1966, ch. 406, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 384, § 1; ch. 398, § 1; Laws, 1970, ch. 372, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 592, § 16; Laws, 2017, ch. 301, § 5, eff from and after passage (approved Jan. 17, 2017).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 28, 2000, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2000, ch. 592, § 16.

Laws of 2016, ch. 311, § 3, provides:

“SECTION 3. Effective January 1, 2019, Sections 37-5-61, 37-5-63, 37-5-65, 37-5-67, 37-5-69, 37-5-71 and 37-5-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provide for elected county superintendents of education, changing the position of county superintendent of education to an appointed office pursuant to petition and referendum, provide for the reestablishment of the office as an elective office, authorize the appointment of the county superintendent of education in certain counties, provide for the selection and qualifications of elected superintendents in certain counties, and provide for the filling of vacancies in the office of elected county superintendent of education; and Section 37-9-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for a referendum on the question of retaining the elective method of choosing the county superintendent of education, are hereby repealed.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment substituted “Section 23-15-839” for “section 23-5-197.”

The 2017 amendment, effective January 17, 2017, rewrote the section, which read: “If a vacancy shall occur in the office of county superintendent of education, such vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the county board of education. If the unexpired term shall exceed six (6) months, it shall be the duty of the board of supervisors of the county to call a special election to fill such vacancy for such unexpired term, which said election shall be called and held in the manner provided by Section 23-15-839. In such case the person so appointed by the county board of education shall hold office only until such election is held and the person elected thereat shall qualify and enter upon the discharge of his duties.”

Cross References —

Provisions providing that all public school districts have a common system of administration after July 1, 1987, see §37-6-1 et seq.

Certain counties excepted from the provisions of this section, see §37-5-69.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

In the event of a superintendent vacancy, the school board must appoint an interim superintendent to fill the unexpired term or to serve until a successor is elected, and if that term exceeds six months, the board of supervisors must call for a special election to fill the vacancy. Johnson, Aug. 8, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0227.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 76.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 159, 173-175.

§§ 37-5-77 through 37-5-105. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 84, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§37-5-77. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-02; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 2; Laws, 1955, Ex Sess ch. 54]

§37-5-79. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-11; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 11]

§37-5-81. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-03; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 3; Laws, 1962, ch. 339]

§37-5-83. [Codes, 1942, § 6271-10; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 10, § 10; Laws, 1954, ch. 275; Laws, 1958, ch. 297; Laws, 1960, ch. 308, § 3; Laws, 1966, ch. 407, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 399; Laws, 1981, ch. 373, § 1]

§37-5-85. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-02; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 2; Laws, 1955, Ex Sess ch. 54]

§37-5-87. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-05; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 5]

§37-5-89. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-12; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 12; Laws, 1956, ch. 276; Laws, 1966, ch. 403, § 1]

§37-5-91. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 7; Laws, 1954, ch. 276, § 1; Laws, 1964, 1st Ex Sess ch. 28, §§ 1-4; Laws, 1981, ch. 499, § 2]

§37-5-93. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 7; Laws, 1954, ch. 276, § 1; Laws, 1964, 1st Ex Sess ch. 28, §§ 1-4; Laws, 1980, ch. 315]

§37-5-95. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-05; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 5]

§37-5-97. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 6]

§37-5-99. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 8]

§37-5-101. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 8]

§37-5-103. [Codes, 1942, § 6252-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 19, § 9]

§37-5-105. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-04; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess ch. 16, § 4; Laws, 1977, ch. 376; Laws, 1985, ch. 460, § 2]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-5-77 related to the bonding of a county superintendent of education.

Former §37-5-79 prohibited a county superintendent of education from teaching in any school while he was in office.

Former §37-5-81 pertained to the office and supplies for a county superintendent of education.

Former §37-5-83 contained provisions for compensation of a county superintendent of education.

Former §37-5-85 provided for the appointment of a warrant deputy county superintendent of education.

Former §37-5-87 provided for the employment and compensation of school supervisors.

Former §37-5-89 pertained to the employment and compensation of clerical help in the office of the county superintendent of education.

Former §37-5-91 related to the general powers and duties of county superintendents of education.

Former §37-5-93 authorized a county superintendent of education to serve as a special fiscal officer.

Former §37-5-95 required a county superintendent of education to keep minutes of the county board of education.

Former §37-5-97 required a county superintendent of education to keep records of his official acts.

Former §37-5-99 required a county superintendent to submit special reports on the status of superintendents, principals and teachers.

Former §37-5-101 required a county superintendent of education to serve as the superintendent of a county-wide school district.

Former §37-5-103 provided for settlement of disputes and controversies arising in public schools of a county.

Former §37-5-105 required a county superintendent of education to maintain a record in his office styled the “Docket of Claims.”

Chapter 6. Mississippi Uniform School Law

§ 37-6-1. Short title.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the “Mississippi Uniform School Law of 1986.”

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-6-3. Application of chapter; definitions; construction of references to “administrative superintendent.”

  1. From and after July 1, 1987, all school districts in the State of Mississippi shall have the same prerogatives, powers, duties and privileges as provided in this chapter.
  2. As used in this chapter, the term “school board” shall mean (a) the county board of education of any countywide school district in this state; and (b) the board of trustees of any municipal separate, special municipal separate, consolidated or line consolidated school district in this state.
  3. As used in this chapter, the term “superintendent” or “superintendent of schools” shall mean (a) the county superintendent of education of any countywide school district in this state whose duties require the supervision of students; and (b) the superintendent of any municipal separate, special municipal separate, consolidated or line consolidated school district in this state.
    1. As used in this chapter, the term “administrative superintendent” shall mean those countywide school superintendents who do not supervise any instructional facility or students and whose duties are prescribed in Section 37-9-16, Mississippi Code of 1972.
    2. This subsection shall stand repealed from and after January 1, 1992, and after such date all references to the “administrative superintendent” in this chapter shall be construed to mean the “superintendent” or “superintendent of schools” as defined in subsection (3) of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 2; Laws, 1987, ch. 307, § 1, eff from and after passage (approved March 3, 1987).

Editor’s Notes —

Section 37-9-16, referred to in this section, was repealed by its own terms effective from and after January 1, 1992.

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to county boards of education, see §37-5-1.

Applicability of this section to continuation or abolition of office of county superintendent of education, see §37-9-12.

Transfer of students in county having administrative superintendent, see §37-15-31.

Applicability of this section to a levy by the board of supervisors for the support of a special municipal separate school district, see §37-57-105.

Levy by board of supervisors of ad valorem tax for support of office of administrative superintendent, see §37-57-105.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Where part of a special separate municipal school district is in one county, and school board member elections are held in an adjoining county where the district offices are located, the first county does not have the authority to conduct elections for trustees of a municipal school board that is not located in that county. Dedeaux, July 25, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0302.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Law Reviews.

Dill, Education law abstract: a survey of prominent issues in Mississippi’s public schools. 13 Miss. C. L. Rev. 337 (Spring, 1993).

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

§ 37-6-5. School district as political subdivision; name.

Each school district in the state shall be a political subdivision with the name of the district being “_______________School District.”

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§ 37-6-7. School board as governing body.

Each school district shall be governed by a school board consisting of five (5) members, selected in the manner provided by law.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. Authority of board where vacancy occurs.

While school boards should not be allowed to operate indefinitely with less than 5 members, boards must be given a reasonable amount of time in which to find a suitable candidate; thus, a 4-member school board had the authority to approve a bond election and authorize the issuance of the bonds at a meeting which took place only 10 days after the fifth board member resigned. Shipman v. North Panola Consol. Sch. Dist., 641 So. 2d 1106, 1994 Miss. LEXIS 372 (Miss. 1994).

§ 37-6-9. President and secretary of school board; quorum; minutes; voting or abstaining on questions.

The school board of all school districts shall organize by the election of a president and a secretary from its membership whose duty it shall be to make reports and to perform all other duties required by law. A majority of the members of the school board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Minutes shall be kept of all meetings of the school board showing (a) the members present and absent; (b) the date, time and place of the meeting; (c) an accurate recording of any final actions taken at such meeting; (d) a record by individual member of any votes taken at such meeting; and (e) any other information that the school board requests to be reflected in the minutes. Each member of the school board present shall either vote or abstain on every question upon which a vote is taken at such meeting. All action taken by a school board shall become official at the time it is taken. All minutes of the school board shall be signed by the president of the board, shall be attested by the secretary of the board and shall be adopted by the board at the next regular meeting, or within thirty (30) working days, whichever occurs later.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 5; Laws, 1987, ch. 307, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved March 3, 1987).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Resolutions.

3. Recording final actions.

1. In general.

While the rules imposed by §37-6-9 are not to be ignored, they do not require perfection; thus, a school board president’s late signing of the minutes of a special board meeting, though a violation of §37-6-9, did not invalidate the actions of the school board taken at that meeting. Shipman v. North Panola Consol. Sch. Dist., 641 So. 2d 1106, 1994 Miss. LEXIS 372 (Miss. 1994).

2. Resolutions.

Neither the fact that a final draft of a resolution calling for a bond election was not in front of the board when the resolution was approved, nor the fact that a copy of the resolution was not entered into the minutes of the meeting, constituted error such that the actions of the board at the meeting should be invalidated. Shipman v. North Panola Consol. Sch. Dist., 641 So. 2d 1106, 1994 Miss. LEXIS 372 (Miss. 1994).

3. Recording final actions.

Because a decision to refuse a worker a hearing was a “final action,” a school board should have recorded that decision in the minutes; however, the failure to record the decision was harmless error. No prejudice was shown as a result of the error; the worker failed to show how her appellate rights were hampered in a case where her employment contract was not renewed. Hodgins v. Phila. Pub. Sch. Dist., 966 So. 2d 1279, 2007 Miss. App. LEXIS 713 (Miss. Ct. App. 2007).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

There is no authority or obligation for new board members or future replacement board members to sign and attest minutes of former board meetings. Minor Sept. 16, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0647.

Members of the school board are required by statute to either vote or abstain; a vote of “present” should counted as an abstention. Smith, Aug. 4, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0311.

§ 37-6-11. Regular meetings; special meetings.

The school boards of all school districts shall meet regularly at such time and at such place as shall be designated by an order entered upon the minutes thereof. Special meetings of such boards shall be held upon the call of the president thereof, or upon the call of a majority of the members thereof.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 6; Laws, 1987, ch. 307, § 3, eff from and after passage (approved March 3, 1987).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Failure to post notice of a called special meeting of a county school district board of trustees and failure to enter such notice in the official minutes as required by §25-41-13(1) is a violation of the Open Meetings Act. However, this violation in and of itself does not make the meeting a nullity. Haynes, Mar. 5, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0053.

§ 37-6-13. Per diem allowance; expenses and mileage; meeting attendance requirements.

  1. Each person serving as a member of the school board of any school district shall receive per diem in the amount of Sixty-seven Dollars ($67.00) for no more than thirty-six (36) meetings of the school board during any one (1) fiscal year or, in his or her discretion, irrevocably may choose to receive as compensation for his or her services an annual salary in the amount of Two Thousand Four Hundred Dollars ($2,400.00), which choice shall remain in force for all successive terms or periods of service of that member. The receipt of the compensation shall not entitle any member of a school board to receive or be eligible for any state employee group insurance, retirement or other fringe benefits. Each member shall be reimbursed for the necessary expenses and mileage in attending meetings of the school board. In addition to the foregoing, all members may be reimbursed for mileage and actual expenses incurred in the further performance of their duties, including attendance at any mandatory school board training session or at regional and national education meetings, when such mileage and other expenses are authorized by the board prior to the date on which they occur. Detailed vouchers shall be submitted for reimbursement for all expenses authorized by this section. Such reimbursement shall be in accordance with Section 25-3-41.

    Such expenses shall be paid on order of the school board by pay certificates issued by the superintendent of the school district involved against the funds available for payment of the administrative expense of the district.

    1. If a member of a school board misses twenty percent (20%) or more of the meetings of the school board during a calendar year, except for absences caused by required military duty, the member must reimburse the school district that portion of the total salary paid to the member that year which is proportionate to the number of meetings missed by the member in relation to the total number of school board meetings held during that year. For purposes of this subsection, consideration may be given only to meetings of which public notice is required.
    2. Before February 1 of each year, the president of each local school board shall submit a report to the State Board of Education containing the names of any members of the school board who missed twenty percent (20%) or more of the school board meetings during the preceding calendar year.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 7; Laws, 1993, ch. 422, § 1; Laws, 1996, ch. 387, § 1; Laws, 1996, ch. 550, § 1; Laws, 1997, ch. 553, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 470, § 1, eff July 2, 2002 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated September 16, 1996, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1996, ch. 550, § 1.

On July 14, 1997, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1997, ch. 553, § 1.

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 2, 2002, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2002, ch. 470.

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment designated the first paragraph as (1); and added (2).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Travel expenses of school board members are governed by Section 37-7-301(o) and this section and a school board may approve travel expenses of their membership without the superintendent’s recommendation. Hand, February 1, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0008.

Assuming that there is a sufficient amount remaining on hand at the end of the fiscal year, and the school board orders the payment of per diem pursuant to this section, then per diem may be paid for the preceding fiscal year. However, if a board member fails to seasonably assert a right to payment he may not be paid for more than the one preceding fiscal year. Adams, January 22, 1996, A.G. Op. #95-0867.

This section allows a school board member to elect to be paid a salary instead of per diem. There is no statutory deadline by which this decision is to be made. However, if and when such an election is made, it is prospective in nature. Bordis, November 1, 1996, A.G. Op. #96-0736.

A school board trustee may elect whether to receive compensation or not, and may, within a fiscal year, change that election if funds permit; however, if a board member chooses to receive his compensation as salary, the decision as to the manner of payment is irrevocable. Nelson, July 17, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0383.

A school board member who was sworn and seated in June of 1999 after a successful challenge to the preceding election, but did not serve on the board from January to June as her seat was contested during this period, could be paid per diem and expenses for the month of June, but not for the period from January to June. Mayfield, July 23, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0353.

A meal may be provided in lieu of reimbursement in order to avoid disruption of business, if the school board determines that such is a necessary and reasonable expense of a meeting. Bryant, July 30, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0380.

Whether a meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus Political and Educational Leadership Institute is educational is a factual question which cannot be answered by way of an Attorney General’s opinion; however, if the school board makes a determination, consistent with fact and subject to review by the State Auditor or a court of competent jurisdiction, that it is an educational meeting then it may approve the expenditure of funds for the attendance of members, as long as the requirements of this section and Section 37-7-301(o) have been met. Swanson, July 7, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0330.

A school board recessed meeting does require public notice pursuant to the Open Meetings Act and would be counted when determining whether a school board member missed more than 20% of the meetings of the school board during a calendar year. Hood, Feb. 13, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0035.

§ 37-6-15. Surety bond for school board member; premiums.

  1. Before entering upon the discharge of the duties of his office, each member of the school board shall give a surety bond in the penal sum of Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00), with sufficient surety, to be payable, conditioned and approved in the manner provided by law.
  2. The school board may execute a blanket surety bond for each school district official and employee (including school business managers and any other employee who receipts and/or disburses school district funds) in the penalty of Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00), unless a different penalty is prescribed by statute, to be payable, conditioned and approved in the manner provided by law. The premium on said bond shall be paid out of the school district maintenance fund.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 8; Laws, 1996, ch. 302, § 7; Laws, 2009, ch. 467, § 14, eff from and after July 1, 2009.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment inserted “including school business managers and any other employee who” following “official and employee” in the first sentence of (2).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school district’s responsibility for the payment of the premiums on the surety bonds of its members is for the amount that is necessary to obtain a good and sufficient bond; the district would not be required to bear the expense of that portion of a premium that is over and above the amount determined to be necessary to obtain a good and sufficient bond. Wyly, Jan. 10, 2003, A.G. Op. #02-0761.

If the school board chooses not to obtain a blanket surety bond, an individual member could not be required to obtain his individual bond from a particular source; however, the member cannot legally obligate the school district to pay a premium over and above what is necessary to obtain a good and sufficient bond. Wyly, Jan. 10, 2003, A.G. Op. #02-0761.

A school board member who obtains a surety bond at a cost that is over and above the cost of obtaining a good and sufficient bond would be required to pay the difference between the two. Wyly, Jan. 10, 2003, A.G. Op. #02-0761.

Section 25-1-33 applies to bonds given by a school board member pursuant to Section 37-6-15(1). Seal, Apr. 18, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0170.

Payment of a premium that is over and above what is necessary to acquire a good and sufficient bond as determined by a school board would be a waste of taxpayers’ money. Seal, Apr. 18, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0170.

Chapter 7. School Districts; Boards of Trustees of School Districts

Article 1. Reorganization and Reconstitution of Districts [Repealed].

§§ 37-7-1 through 37-7-17. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 50, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§§37-7-1 through37-7-17. [Codes, 1942, §§ 6328-01, 6328-02, 6328-04, 6328-16, 6328-21, 6328-35 to 6328-39; Laws, 1953 Ex Sess, ch. 12, §§ 1, 2, 4; Laws, 1953 Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 1; Laws, 1955 Ex Sess, ch. 66, § 5; Laws, 1956, ch. 267, §§ 1-5; Laws, 1956, ch. 273]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §§37-7-1 through 37-7-17 contained provisions concerning the reorganization and reconstitution of school districts. For present provisions relating to reorganization of school districts, see §37-7-103 et seq.

Article 3. Abolition, Alteration and Creation of Districts.

§ 37-7-101. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 59, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

[Codes, 1942, § 6328-08; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 8]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-101 pertained to the abolition or reorganization of school districts by governing authorities of school districts.

§ 37-7-103. Abolition, reorganization or alteration of district by school board.

From and after July 1, 1987, the school board of any school district shall have full jurisdiction, power and authority, at any regular meeting thereof or at any special meeting called for that purpose, to abolish such existing district, or to reorganize, change or alter the boundaries of any such district. In addition thereto, with the consent of the school board of the school district involved, the school board may add to such school district any part of the school district adjoining same, and with the consent of the school board of the school district involved, may detach territory from such school district and annex same to an adjoining district. Provided, however, that the consent of the school board of the school districts involved in implementing the provisions of Section 37-7-104, 37-7-104.2, 37-7-104.3, 37-7-104.4, 37-7-104.5, 37-7-104.6, 37-7-104.7 or 37-7-104.8 shall not be required for the administrative consolidation of such school districts pursuant to the order of the State Board of Education.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 52; Laws, 2012, ch. 441, § 2; Laws, 2012, ch. 551, § 1; Laws, 2013, ch. 568, § 2; Laws, 2013, ch. 572, § 3; brought forward without change, Laws, 2015, ch. 429, § 2; Laws, 2016, ch. 463, § 2; Laws, 2016, ch. 464, § 2; Laws, 2016, ch. 465, § 2; Laws, 2016, ch. 466, § 2; Laws, 2017, ch. 436, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

This section was amended by Section 2 of Chapter 441, Laws of 2012, effective from and after September 11, 2012, the date it was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended (approved April 19, 2012). It was also amended by Section 2 of Chapter 551, Laws of 2012, effective from and after September 10, 2012, the date it was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 2 of Chapter 441, Laws of 2012, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section effective on an earlier date.

Section 2 of ch. 568, Laws of 2013, effective October 25, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response to the submission of this section under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (approved on April 25, 2013), amended this section. Section 3 of ch. 572, Laws of 2013, effective October 24, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response to the submission of this section under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (approved on April 25, 2013), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments, pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the August 1, 2013, meeting of the Committee.

Section 2 of ch. 463, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:00 a.m.), amended this section. Section 2 of ch. 464, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:02 a.m.). Section 2 of ch. 465, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:05 a.m.), and Section 2 of ch. 466, Laws of 2016, effective July 1, 2016 (approved May 10, 2016, 11:10 a.m.), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of all amendments, pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the August 5, 2016, meeting of the Committee.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in the third sentence by reinserting “ Section 37-7-104.2 or Section 37-7-104.3,” which was erroneously deleted from the integrated version of the section. The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 5, 2016, meeting.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a grammatical error in the last sentence by substituting “Section” for “Sections.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 15, 2017, meeting.

Editor’s Notes —

This section was amended by two bills in 2013. The effective date of each of the two bills that amended this section, Chapter 572 (House Bill No. 716) and Chapter 568 (Senate Bill No. 2637), is “from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.” However, after the bills were approved, the United States Supreme Court, in the case of Shelby County v. Holder (June 25, 2013), struck down the coverage formula that determined what jurisdictions are subject to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, so the coverage formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance under Section 5.

Because of the Shelby County decision, the United States Attorney General is not making any determinations under Section 5 on voting or election changes made by states. The Supreme Court did not strike down Section 5, so it is still in effect. For that reason, the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office submitted Chapter 572 and Chapter 568 to the United States Attorney General, in order to technically meet the requirements of Section 5 and fulfill the condition in the effective date of the bills, which will allow the bills to take effect.

By letter dated October 24, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded to the submission of Chapter 572, that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 572 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 572, so Chapter 572 became effective from and after October 24, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter.

By letter dated October 25, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded to the submission of Chapter 568, that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 568 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 568, so Chapter 568 became effective from and after October 25, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter.

The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation, in its meeting on August 1, 2013, voted to integrate the amendments to this section by Chapter 572 and Chapter 568. The amendments to this section became effective from and after October 25, 2013, the date of the latest response letter from the United States Attorney General.

By letter dated September 11, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2012, ch. 441.

By letter dated September 10, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2012, ch. 551.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2012 amendment (ch. 441), added the last sentence. For effective date, see Editor’s note.

The second 2012 amendment (ch. 551), added the last sentence.

The 2013 amendment (ch. 568), substituted “or Section 37-7-104.2” for “Mississippi Code of 1972” following “Section 37-7-104” in the last sentence. For effective date, see Editor’s note.

The 2013 amendment (ch. 572), substituted “or Section 37-7-104.3” for “Mississippi code of 1972” following “Section 37-7-104” in the last sentence. For effective date, see Editor’s note.

The 2015 amendment brought the section forward without change.

The first 2016 amendment (ch. 463) inserted “or Section 37-7-104.5” in the last sentence.

The second 2016 amendment (ch. 464) inserted “or Section 37-7-104.6” in the last sentence.

The third 2016 amendment (ch. 465) substituted “Section 37-7-104.4” for “Section 37-7-104.2 or Section 37-7-104.3” in the last sentence.

The fourth 2016 amendment (ch. 466) substituted “Section 37-7-104.7” for “Section 37-7-104.2 or Section 37-7-104.3” in the last sentence.

The 2017 amendment, in the third sentence, deleted “Section” preceding each of the code section numbers following 37-7-104, and inserted “37-7-104.8.”

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. School taxes.

1. In general.

A public school board had the authority to consolidate schools within its district and to reassign students en masse; the plan was not a “reorganization of the school district” within the meaning of §37-7-105. Section37-7-105 and its petition, publication and referendum procedures do not apply to everything the school board may wish to abolish, alter or reorganize. The statute applies only where the school board “abolishes, alters or reorganizes a school district.” The phrase “school district” imports the geographic boundaries of the district and perhaps the corporate organization or structure thereof. The school board’s plan did not alter the existing structure of the school district, which remained a county-wide district, and did not reorganize corporate structure, and therefore §§37-7-103 and 37-7-105 did not apply. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

Section37-7-105 merely establishes procedural requisites that must be met in carrying out the general grant of authority contained §37-7-103. If, under §37-7-103, the school board decides to “reorganize, change or alter the boundaries” of the district, §37-7-105 requires that it publish its intention to do so and receive petitions from objectors. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

2. School taxes.

Where a municipal separate school district was reconstituted in accordance with the law without any added territory, and thereafter the county school district was abolished and its territory accepted by and annexed to the municipal school district, all in strict accord with the relevant statutes, municipal authorities rather than county authorities were thereafter the proper parties to assess and collect school taxes throughout the county. Winston County v. Woodruff, 187 So. 2d 299, 1966 Miss. LEXIS 1341 (Miss. 1966).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

There presently exists no statutory authority by which school board may split an existing district into two or more parts and thus create more school districts; however, electors of city desiring its own district may, pursuant to Section 37-7-109, initiate a petition to have it established as separate district. Willis, Jan. 27, 1994, A.G. Op. #94-0029.

Sections 37-7-103, 37-7-113 and 37-7-311 allow a school board to organize its schools so as to serve the best interests of the schools and ultimately the students, and to avoid unnecessary duplication. Where the actions of local school boards do nothing to alter the existing geographical features, boundaries, or corporate structure of the school districts there is no necessity to seek State Board of Education approval. Burnham, February 15, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0029.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 38, 47 et seq.

16A Am. Jur. Legal Forms 2d (Rev), Schools §§ 229:15 et seq. (creation, alteration, and dissolution of school districts).

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 16 et seq., 109 et seq.

§ 37-7-104. Consolidation of certain county school districts under conservatorship into one countywide district under certain circumstances; procedure.

  1. In any Mississippi county in which are located, as of February 8, 2012, three (3) school districts and only three (3) school districts, all of which are under conservatorship as defined by the Mississippi Department of Education as of February 8, 2012, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of the school districts in the county into one (1) countywide school district with one (1) county board of education. The State Board of Education shall determine the school district(s) applicable to the provisions of this section and spread this finding on the minutes of its August 2012 meeting. On or before September 1, 2012, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school boards applicable to the provisions of this section, or the Mississippi Department of Education Conservator for each of the three (3) school districts, with notice and instruction regarding the action to be taken to comply with this section. In such county, there shall be a new county board of education elected in a November 2013 special election which shall be called for that purpose and the new county board members shall be elected as provided in Section 37-5-7, Mississippi Code of 1972. No previous board member shall be eligible to serve on the newly elected board. Provided, however, that it shall be the responsibility of the board of supervisors of such county to apportion the countywide school district into five (5) new single member board of education districts which shall be consistent with the supervisors district lines in said county. The board of supervisors of said county shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation within said county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of supervisors of said county, said new district lines will thereafter be effective for the November 2013 special election. If necessary, the county board of education of said county shall reapportion the board of education districts in accordance with applicable law as soon as practicable after the results of the 2020 decennial census are published and as soon as practicable after every decennial census thereafter. The new county board of education, with the written approval of the Mississippi Department of Education Conservator and the State Board of Education, shall provide for the administrative consolidation of all school districts in the county into one (1) countywide school district on or before July 1 next following the November 2013 election. The new county board of education shall serve as the school board for the county. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation that does not voluntarily consolidate with the new school district ordered by the county board of education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education with the countywide school district, to be effective on July 1 following the election of the new county board of education. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate any school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into one (1) countywide district by July 1 following the election of the new county board of education. All affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the county board of education or the State Board of Education, as the case may be, on or before July 1 following the election of the new county board of education.
  2. On July 1 following the election of the new county board of education, the former county board of education and the former board of trustees of any municipal separate, or special municipal separate school district located in such county shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of a school district located in such county shall be transferred to the new reorganized school district of the county in which such school district is located. The Mississippi Department of Education Conservator and the State Board of Education shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers and principals for the next school year following the required administrative consolidation with the consultation of the newly elected successor county board of education. The successor county board of education shall appoint the new county superintendent of education for the reorganized school district. The county superintendent of education of said reorganized school district shall not be elected but shall thereafter be appointed by the successor county board of education in the manner provided in Section 37-9-25. The superintendents of the former under-performing school districts located in the county shall not be eligible for appointment as the new superintendent. The selection of the appointed county superintendent of education and the assistant superintendent of education in the central administration office of the successor countywide school district shall be the responsibility of the successor county board of education with the approval of the Mississippi Department of Education Conservator and the State Board of Education. No such administratively consolidated school district shall have more than one (1) assistant superintendent of education. It shall be the responsibility of the successor county board of education, with approval of the Mississippi Department of Education Conservator and the State Board of Education, to prepare and approve the budget of the new reorganized districts, and the county board of education may use staff from the former school districts to prepare the budget. Any proposed order of the successor county board of education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be submitted and approved by the State Board of Education. The finding of the State Board of Education shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor county school board of education pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom to the State Board of Education within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. Such appeal shall be de novo, and the finding of the State Board of Education upon such question shall be final and conclusive for the purpose of the approval or disapproval of the action by said county board of education.
  3. When any school district in such county is abolished under the provisions of this section, the abolition thereof shall not impair or release the property of such former school district from liability for the payment of the bonds or other indebtedness of such district and it shall be the duty of the board of supervisors of said county to levy taxes on the property of said district so abolished from year to year according to the terms of such indebtedness until same shall be fully paid.
  4. In the administratively consolidated countywide school district created under this section, the ad valorem tax rate shall be determined as set forth under Section 37-57-1 et seq.
  5. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require or restrict the closing of any school or school facility, unless such facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  6. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in a county pursuant to this section. When the orders of the successor county board of education adopting the boundaries of the successor countywide school district have been entered and are final, as approved by the State Board of Education, the new district lines shall be submitted by the State Board of Education with the assistance of the Attorney General to the Attorney General of the United States for preclearance or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia for a declaratory judgment in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. In the event the change in the school district lines are precleared or approved, the State Board of Education shall formally declare the new lines as the new boundaries of the consolidated countywide school district.

HISTORY: Laws, 2012, ch. 441, § 1, eff September 11, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the addition of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated September 11, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the addition of this section by Laws of 2012, ch. 441.

Cross References —

Consent of school board of school districts involved in implementing the provisions of this section, §37-7-104.1 or37-27-79, not required for the administrative consolidation of the school districts pursuant to order of State Board of Education, see §37-7-103.

§ 37-7-104.1. Administrative consolidation of all school districts in Bolivar County, Mississippi, into three school districts; procedure.

  1. In Bolivar County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2012, six (6) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of the school districts in the county into three (3) school districts as follows:
    1. One (1) existing school district which shall be the Cleveland School District;
    2. One (1) new consolidated school district to be designated as North Bolivar Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former North Bolivar School District and the Mound Bayou Public School District. The central administrative office of the North Bolivar Consolidated School District shall be located in Mound Bayou, Mississippi; and
    3. One (1) new consolidated school district to be designated as West Bolivar Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former West Bolivar School District, Shaw School District and Benoit School District. The central administrative office of the West Bolivar Consolidated School District shall be located in Rosedale, Mississippi.
  2. On or before September 1, 2012, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school boards in Bolivar County with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section. The State Board of Education shall provide for the administrative consolidation of all school districts in the county outside of the territory of Cleveland School District into North Bolivar Consolidated School District and West Bolivar Consolidated School District on or before July 1, 2014. In each new consolidated school district there shall be a new consolidated school district board of trustees elected in a November 2013 special election which shall be called by the Governor for that purpose. The new consolidated school district boards of trustees shall be elected and the terms of office established as provided in Section 37-7-207, Mississippi Code of 1972. The State Board of Education shall determine the boundary lines for the territory of the two (2) new school districts and shall spread a legal description of the new school districts on the minutes of its August 2012 meeting and shall serve the applicable school boards and the board of supervisors with an adequate legal description of these new boundaries. It shall be the responsibility of the State Board of Education with the assistance of the Joint Legislative Committee on Performance Evaluation and Expenditure Review (PEER) to apportion the territory of the two (2) new school districts into five (5) new board of trustee election districts for each new school district. The State Board of Education shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in said county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each school district in the county, said new district lines will thereafter be effective for the November 2013 special election. Any school board member of the former school district residing in the proper election district shall be eligible for election to the new board of trustees for North Bolivar Consolidated School District or West Bolivar Consolidated School District. The local school board of each new school district shall reapportion the school board districts in accordance with the procedure described in Section 37-7-207, Mississippi Code of 1972, as is necessary as soon as practicable after the 2020 decennial census are published and as soon as practicable after every decennial census thereafter. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in such county that does not voluntarily consolidate with the two (2) new school districts ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education with the appropriate school district in which such district is located, to be effective on July 1 following the election of the new local school boards. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into two (2) school districts by July 1 following the election of the new school boards. All affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education on or before July 1 following the election of the new school boards.
  3. On July 1 following the election of the new school district boards of trustees in Bolivar County, the former county board of education and the former board of trustees of North Bolivar School District, Mound Bayou Public School District, West Bolivar School District, Shaw School District and Benoit School District shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of a school district located in such former school district shall be transferred to the new reorganized school district of Bolivar County in which such former school district is located. Each former school board shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers and principals for the next school year following the required administrative consolidation with the consultation of the newly elected successor school boards. The new Board of Trustees for the North Bolivar Consolidated School District shall appoint the Superintendent of Schools for said school district, and the Board of Trustees for the West Bolivar Consolidated School District shall appoint the Superintendent of Schools for said school district. The subsequent superintendent of schools of said reorganized school districts shall not be elected but shall thereafter be appointed by the successor boards of trustees in the manner provided in Section 37-9-25. Any superintendent serving in the former school districts shall be eligible for appointment as a superintendent in North Bolivar Consolidated School District or West Bolivar Consolidated School District. North Bolivar Consolidated School District and West Bolivar Consolidated School District shall not have more than one (1) assistant superintendent. It shall be the responsibility of the successor boards of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the respective new reorganized districts, and the successor boards of trustees may use staff from the former school districts to prepare the budget. Any proposed order of the State Board of Education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor newly elected board of trustees of a consolidated school district pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom to the State Board of Education within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. Such appeal shall be de novo, and the finding of the State Board of Education upon such question shall be final and conclusive for the purpose of the approval or disapproval of the action by said county board of education.
  4. When any school district in such county is abolished under the provisions of this section, the abolition thereof shall not impair or release the property of such former school district from liability for the payment of the bonds or other indebtedness of such district.
  5. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless such facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  6. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Bolivar County pursuant to this section. The consolidated districts shall make an election within one (1) year of consolidation concerning the group term life insurance described in subsection (7) of Section 25-15-9. When the orders of the State Board of Education adopting the boundaries of the successor school districts and the successor board of trustees election districts have been entered and are final, as directed by the State Board of Education, the new district lines shall be submitted by the State Board of Education with the assistance of the Attorney General to the Attorney General of the United States for preclearance or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia for a declaratory judgment in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. In the event the change in the school district lines and election districts are precleared or approved, the State Board of Education shall formally declare the new lines as the new boundaries of the successor school districts.

HISTORY: Laws, 2012, ch. 551, § 1, eff September 10, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the addition of this section).

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in (1)(a) and (2) by substituting “Cleveland School District” for “Cleveland Municipal Separate School District.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 1, 2013, meeting.

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated September 10, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the addition of this section by Laws of 2012, ch. 551.

Cross References —

Consent of school board of school districts involved in implementing the provisions of this section, §37-7-104 or37-27-79, not required for the administrative consolidation of the school districts pursuant to order of State Board of Education, see §37-7-103.

§ 37-7-104.2. Administrative consolidation of all school districts in Clay County, Mississippi, into one school district; procedure.

  1. In Clay County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2013, two (2) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of those school districts in the county into one (1) new consolidated school district to be designated as West Point Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Clay County School District and the West Point School District. The central administrative office of the West Point Consolidated School District shall be located in West Point, Mississippi.
  2. On or before September 1, 2013, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school boards in Clay County with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section. The State Board of Education shall provide for the administrative consolidation of the school districts in the county on or before July 1, 2015. In the new West Point Consolidated School District, there shall be a new board of trustees comprised of five (5) members selected as follows: (a) the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of the City of West Point shall appoint three (3) of the five (5) members, each to be selected for a term of four (4) years; and (b) two (2) members to be elected for a term of four (4) years by the electors of Clay County residing outside of the West Point corporate limits who shall be residents of that territory and who shall be elected in a November 2014 special election which shall be called by the Governor for that purpose. All subsequent members of the board elected from the territory outside of the West Point corporate limits shall be elected for a term of four (4) years at the regular general election held on the first Monday in November next preceding the expiration of the term of office of the respective member or members. All elected and appointed members shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election or appointment. The State Board of Education, with the assistance of the Joint Legislative Committee on Performance Evaluation and Expenditure Review (PEER), shall apportion the territory of the new consolidated school district located outside the West Point corporate limits into two (2) new single member board of trustee election districts. The State Board of Education shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each school district in the county, the new district lines will thereafter be effective for the November 2014 special election. Any school board member of the former school districts residing in the proper territory shall be eligible for appointment or election to the new Board of Trustees for West Point Consolidated School District.

    Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in Clay County that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective on July 1 following the election of the new local school board. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into one (1) consolidated school district by July 1 following the selection of the new board of trustees. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education on or before July 1 following the selection of the new school boards.

  3. On July 1 following the selection of the new Board of Trustees of the West Point Consolidated School District, the former county board of education and the former Board of Trustees of the West Point School District shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of a school district located in such former school district shall be transferred to the new reorganized school district of West Point Consolidated School District in which such former school district is located. Each former school board shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers and principals for the next school year following the required administrative consolidation with the consultation of the newly elected successor school board. The new Board of Trustees for the West Point Consolidated School District shall appoint the Superintendent of Schools for the school district. The Superintendent of Schools for the West Point Consolidated School District may appoint assistant superintendent(s) of schools for the district, but in no instance shall the administrative leadership of the West Point Consolidated School District exceed the number of assistant superintendents employed in the former West Point School District. The subsequent superintendent of schools of the reorganized school district shall not be elected, but shall thereafter be appointed by the successor board of trustees in the manner provided in Section 37-9-25. It shall be the responsibility of the successor board of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the new reorganized district, and the successor board of trustees may use staff from the former school districts to prepare the budget. Any proposed order of the State Board of Education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor newly selected Board of Trustees of the West Point Consolidated School District pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. Said appeal shall be taken in the same manner as appeals are taken from judgments or decisions of the board of supervisors as provided in Section 11-51-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, the provisions of which shall be fully applicable to appeals taken hereunder. The Board of Trustees of the West Point Consolidated School District shall not pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order until the time for an appeal therefrom shall have expired, nor shall said board pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order from which an appeal is taken until said appeal shall have been finally determined.
  4. When any school district in the county is abolished under the provisions of this section, the abolition thereof shall not impair or release the property of that former school district from liability for the payment of the bonds or other indebtedness of such district.
  5. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  6. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Clay County pursuant to this section. The consolidated districts shall make an election within one (1) year of consolidation concerning the group term life insurance described in subsection (7) of Section 25-15-9. When the orders of the State Board of Education adopting the boundaries of the successor board of trustees election districts have been entered and are final, as directed by the State Board of Education, the new district lines shall be submitted by the State Board of Education with the assistance of the Attorney General to the Attorney General of the United States for preclearance or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia for a declaratory judgment in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. In the event the change in the school district lines and election districts are precleared or approved, the State Board of Education shall formally declare the new lines as the new boundaries of the successor school district.
  7. For the initial two (2) years following the administrative consolidation required by this section, the State Department of Education may grant a waiver of accountability and state assessment requirements to the West Point Consolidated School District for the student population enrolled therein from the former Clay County School District when determining the new consolidated school district accreditation level on the performance and accountability rating model.

HISTORY: Laws, 2013, ch. 568, § 1, eff October 25, 2013 (the date of the United States Attorney General’s response to the submission of this section under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965).

Editor’s Notes —

The effective date of Chapter 568, which added this section, is “from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.” However, after the bill was approved, the United States Supreme Court, in the case of Shelby County v. Holder (June 25, 2013), struck down the coverage formula that determined what jurisdictions are subject to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, so the coverage formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance under Section 5.

Because of the Shelby County decision, the United States Attorney General is not making any determinations under Section 5 on voting or election changes made by states. The Supreme Court did not strike down Section 5, so it is still in effect. For that reason, the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office submitted Chapter 568 to the United States Attorney General, in order to technically meet the requirements of Section 5 and fulfill the condition in the effective date of the bill, which will allow the bill to take effect.

By letter dated October 25, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded to the submission of Chapter 568 that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 568 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 568, so Chapter 568 became effective from and after October 25, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter.

§ 37-7-104.3. Administrative consolidation of all school districts in Oktibbeha County, Mississippi, into Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District; powers and responsibilities of Conservator of Oktibbeha County School District; procedure; issue of bonds and notes for repairs, improvements, purchase of books, buses, equipment, etc.

  1. In Oktibbeha County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2013, two (2) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of those school districts in the county into one (1) new countywide municipal separate school district to be designated as Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Oktibbeha County School District and the Starkville School District, effective on July 1, 2015. Until June 30, 2015, preceding the effective date of the required administrative consolidation of school districts in the county, the Oktibbeha County School District shall remain in conservatorship, under the authority and control of the Mississippi Recovery School District of the State Department of Education. At such time that the administrative consolidation becomes effective, the central administrative office of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District shall be located in Starkville, Mississippi.
    1. On or before July 1, 2014, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school board of the Starkville School District with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section.
    2. In the new consolidated school district there shall be a countywide municipal separate school district board of trustees, which shall consist of the existing members of the Board of Trustees of the Starkville School District. However, upon the first occurrence of a vacancy on the board as a result of an expired term of an appointed board member, that vacancy shall become an elected position and shall be filled by the election of a board member as follows: the 2016 expiring term board member shall remain in office until January 1, 2017. In November 2016, an election will be held for a board member who resides outside of the incorporated municipal limits in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the elected board member will take office for a five-year term beginning January 1, 2017. Subsequent board members shall be selected in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203. The Board of Supervisors of Oktibbeha County shall publish notice of the school board elections in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks.
    3. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in the county that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective immediately upon action of the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into one (1) consolidated school district by July 1 following the motion to consolidate. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education.
  2. On July 1, 2015, following the motion of State Board of Education to consolidate school districts in Oktibbeha County, the Oktibbeha County School District shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of the school district located in such former school district shall be transferred to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District as of July 1, 2015. The Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District is authorized and directed to execute and record all documents and conveyances necessary to convey title to all real and personal property of the Oktibbeha County School District to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. The conservator is further authorized and directed to sign all documents and to take all actions necessary to assign contracts and other property, contract rights and obligations of the Oktibbeha County School District to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. The Board of Trustees of the Starkville School District shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for operations, teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel for the 2015-2016 school year prior to July 1, 2015, and shall consult with the conservator for the establishment of contracts for teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel located in the former Oktibbeha County School District for the 2015-2016 school year. In order to prepare for the efficient staffing of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District and the Superintendent of the Starkville School District shall have full authority to nonrenew the employment contract of any teacher, principal, clerical or administrative staff located within their respective school districts for the 2015-2016 school year. The superintendent and assistant superintendent(s) of schools of the former Starkville School District shall continue to serve in like administrative capacities of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, but in no instance shall the administrative leadership of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District exceed three (3) assistant superintendents to be appointed by the superintendent of the former Starkville School District. No superintendent serving in the former Oktibbeha County School District shall be eligible for appointment as a superintendent or assistant superintendent in the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. Likewise, no trustee serving in the former Oktibbeha County School District shall be eligible for election to the new Board of Trustees of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. It shall be the responsibility of the board of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the respective new reorganized district, and the board of trustees may use staff from the former school district to prepare the budget. Any transfer of the assets, real or personal property of the Oktibbeha County School District mandated by this section shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by this section to effectuate the administrative consolidation.
  3. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  4. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Oktibbeha County pursuant to the requirements of this section. Beginning with the insurance cafeteria plan year of November 1, 2014, the consolidated districts shall fall under all insurance plans and policies elected by the Starkville Public School District, including the group term life insurance described in Section 25-15-9(7).
  5. For the initial three (3) years following the administrative consolidation required by this section, the State Department of Education shall grant a waiver of accountability and state assessment requirements to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, subject to the approval of the State Board of Education.
  6. As soon as practicable after March 31, 2015, the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District shall initiate the issuance of notes or certificates of indebtedness of the Oktibbeha County School District for the purpose of purchasing school buses, textbooks, computers and software and other equipment and fixtures for school facilities, and for any purposes enumerated in Section 37-59-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, and making repairs, alterations, utility upgrades and additions to two (2) elementary school buildings located in the Oktibbeha County School District in order to meet the same physical and educational standards as the elementary school buildings in Starkville, and to contribute funds to the Starkville School District for capital improvements to accommodate county school district students and increase capacity for the consolidation. The contribution of such funds to the Starkville School District is hereby authorized. Said notes or certificates of indebtedness shall be issued under the authority of Sections 37-59-101 through 37-59-115, Mississippi Code of 1972, including all notice requirements, however, the resolution as to the necessity for the issuance of the notes and the execution of the documents shall be made by the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District. The term of any notes or certificates of indebtedness issued under this section may not exceed the useful life of the financed project as determined according to the upper limit of useful life and depreciation guidelines established under the United States Internal Revenue Code and regulations. The levying authority for the Oktibbeha County School District, and after July 1, 2015, the levying authority for the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, shall annually levy a special tax on all taxable property of the former Oktibbeha County School District, and after July 1, 2015, on all taxable property of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on such negotiable notes or certificates of indebtedness as the same shall respectively mature and accrue. Said tax shall be levied as provided in Section 37-59-107, Mississippi Code of 1972, except that the levy shall not exceed three (3) mills on the dollar for the payment of all notes that are subject to the levy under Section 37-59-107. Any notes or certificates of indebtedness issued pursuant to this subsection (7) shall become indebtedness of the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District from and after July 1, 2015, and the mandatory special ad valorem tax levied to pay the notes or certificates of indebtedness by the levying authority pursuant to Section 37-59-107, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be levied upon all of the taxable property within the Starkville- Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.
  7. For a period beginning July 1, 2014, and ending June 30, 2015, the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District shall issue negotiable bonds of the Oktibbeha County School District for the purpose of purchasing school buses, textbooks, computers and software and other equipment and fixtures for school facilities, and making repairs, alterations and additions and utility upgrades, and for any purposes allowed by Section 37-59-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, to school facilities in the Oktibbeha County School District and in the Starkville School District to accommodate students in the former Oktibbeha County School District who will be attending school in the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District and the increased capacity needs under the consolidation. Said bonds shall be issued under the authority of Sections 37-59-1 through 37-59-45, however, any resolutions as to the necessity for the issuance of any bonds and execution of the documents may be made periodically by the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District. Provided further, that the conservator shall publish each resolution of necessity and intent to issue any bonds once each week for at least three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper having general circulation in the Oktibbeha County School District, with the first publication thereof to be made not less than fifteen (15) days prior to the date upon which the conservator is to take final action upon the question of authorizing the issuance of said bonds. If no petition requesting an election is filed prior to the date and time of the meeting at which the conservator is to take final action on the issuance of said bonds, then the conservator shall authorize the issuance of the bonds. If at any time prior to the date and time of the meeting at which the conservator is to take final action upon the question of issuing such bonds a petition signed by not less than twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of the Oktibbeha County School District shall be filed with the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District requesting that an election be called on the question of issuing the bonds, then the conservator shall either rescind the applicable resolution of intent or adopt a resolution calling an election to be held within the territory of the Oktibbeha County School District upon such question. The election shall be called and held, and notice thereof shall be given, in the same manner for elections upon the question of bond issues under Sections 37-59-11, 37-59-13, 37-59-15 and 37-59-17, and the results thereof shall be certified by the Oktibbeha County Election Commission to the Conservator of the Oktibbeha County School District. If three-fifths (3/5) of the qualified electors of the Oktibbeha County School District who voted in such election vote in favor of the issuance of such bonds, then the conservator shall authorize the Oktibbeha County School District to issue such bonds. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary, the Oktibbeha County School District may issue bonds pursuant to this subsection (8) in an amount which, when added to all of the Oktibbeha County School District’s then outstanding bonded indebtedness, shall not result in the imposition on any of the property in said district of an indebtedness for school purposes of more than twenty percent (20%) of the assessed value of the taxable property within said district, according to the then last completed assessment for taxation. Any bonds issued pursuant to this subsection (8) shall become indebtedness of the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District from and after July 1, 2015, and the mandatory special ad valorem tax to be levied by the levying authority pursuant to Section 37-59-23, Mississippi Code of 1972, to pay the bonds shall be levied upon all taxable property within the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.
  8. For a period beginning July 1, 2015, and ending July 1, 2024, the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District Board of Trustees may periodically issue negotiable bonds in one or more series of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District for the purpose of purchasing school buses, textbooks, computers and software and other equipment and fixtures for school facilities and for any purposes enumerated in Section 37-59-3, Mississippi Code of 1972.The term of any such bonds may not exceed the useful life of the financed project as determined according to the upper limit of useful life and depreciation guidelines established under the United States Internal Revenue Code and regulations.Said bonds shall be issued under the authority of Sections 37-59-1 through 37-59-45, including all notice and publication requirements, however, the necessity for the issuance of the bonds shall be made pursuant to a reverse referendum procedure to be followed by the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District Board of Trustees as follows:the board of trustees shall publish each resolution of necessity and intent to issue bonds once each week for at least three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper having general circulation in the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, with the first publication thereof to be made not less than fifteen (15) days prior to the date on which the board of trustees is to take final action authorizing the issuance of the bonds. If no petition requesting an election is filed prior to the date and time of the meeting at which the board of trustees is to take final action on the issuance of the bonds, the board of trustees shall authorize the issuance of the bonds.If at any time prior to the date and time of the meeting at which the board of trustees is to take final action authorizing the issuance of the bonds a petition signed by not less than twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District shall be filed with the Board of Trustees of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District requesting that an election be called on the question of issuing the bonds, then the board of trustees shall, not later than its next regular meeting, adopt a resolution calling an election to be held within the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District upon such question.The election shall be called and held, and notice thereof shall be given, in the same manner for elections upon the question of bond issues under Sections 37-59-11, 37-59-13, 37-59-15 and 37-59-17, and the results thereof shall be certified to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District Board of Trustees, as the case may be.If three-fifths (3/5) of the qualified electors of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District who voted in such election vote in favor of the issuance of such bonds, then the board of trustees shall issue such bonds. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary, the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District may issue bonds pursuant to this subsection (9) in an amount which, when added to all of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District’s then outstanding bonded indebtedness, shall not result in the imposition on any of the property in said district of an indebtedness for school purposes of more than twenty percent (20%) of the assessed value of the taxable property within said district, according to the then last completed assessment for taxation.Any bonds issued pursuant to this subsection (9) shall be indebtedness of the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.The mandatory special ad valorem tax to be levied by the levying authority pursuant to Section 37-59-23, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be levied on all taxable property of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.
  9. Notwithstanding any law or any provision of any law to the contrary, from and after July 1, 2015, all outstanding debt of the former Oktibbeha County School District and the former Starkville School District shall be assumed by and become the debt of the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. Any debt assumed by the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District secured by a special ad valorem tax shall become secured by and payable from a mandatory, special ad valorem tax which shall be levied on all taxable property in the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District by the levying authority of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District. All debt secured by a pledge by either district of its education enhancement funds pursuant to Section 37-61-33, Mississippi Code of 1972, or by a pledge of its Mississippi Adequate Education Program funds will continue to be secured by and payable from the same funds after the debt is assumed by the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District as of July 1, 2015. It is the intent of the Legislature that any such pledges will remain in effect and that the pledged funds will be available to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District to pay its debt to which the funds are pledged.
  10. It shall be the responsibility of the Board of Supervisors of Oktibbeha County to provide office, furnishing and utilities for the administrative Office of the Superintendent of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.
  11. The new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District is authorized and encouraged to develop a partnership with Mississippi State University to create a model rural education school to serve all sixth- and seventh-grade students from Oktibbeha County and a model prekindergarten program which shall also serve as a model for the education of teachers and administrators. The Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District and Mississippi State University are authorized and empowered, in each’s discretion, to enter into an agreement for the purpose of designing, constructing, maintaining and operating a model rural education school to serve all sixth- and seventh-grade students from Oktibbeha County. The Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District and Mississippi State University are further authorized and empowered, in each’s discretion, to transfer funds to the other and expend such funds on mutually agreeable terms and conditions for the construction, maintenance and operation of such school.
  12. The Board of Supervisors of Oktibbeha County shall be the “levying authority” for the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.

HISTORY: Laws, 2013, ch. 572, § 2; Laws, 2014, ch. 537, § 2; Laws, 2015, ch. 429, § 3; Laws, 2016, ch. 354, § 1; Laws, 2017, ch. 437, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Editor’s Notes —

The effective date of Chapter 572, which added this section, is “from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.” However, after the bill was approved, the United States Supreme Court, in the case of Shelby County v. Holder (June 25, 2013), struck down the coverage formula that determined what jurisdictions are subject to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, so the coverage formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance under Section 5.

Because of the Shelby County decision, the United States Attorney General is not making any determinations under Section 5 on voting or election changes made by states. The Supreme Court did not strike down Section 5, so it is still in effect. For that reason, the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office submitted Chapter 572 to the United States Attorney General, in order to technically meet the requirements of Section 5 and fulfill the condition in the effective date of the bill, which will allow the bill to take effect.

By letter dated October 24, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded to the submission of Chapter 572 that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 572 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 572, so Chapter 572 became effective from and after October 24, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter.

Laws of 2016, ch. 354, § 2, provides:

“SECTION 2. Subject to the approval of the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning, Mississippi State University is authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to lease to the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District and the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District is authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to lease from Mississippi State University, upon mutually agreeable terms and conditions, land suitable for a model rural education school to serve all sixth- and seventh-grade students from Oktibbeha County for a term not to exceed ninety-nine (99) years. Any such lease shall not be cancelled by successor boards based on the binding successor doctrine.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2014 amendment rewrote the section to establish the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, and added (7) through (13).

The 2015 amendment rewrote (7) through (10) to provide that the special ad valorem taxes levied by the Board of Supervisors of Oktibbeha County to pay the principal and interest on certain notes and bonds issued after July 1, 2015, for equipment and school facility capital improvements in the former Oktibbeha County School District shall be on all taxable property of the new Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District.

The 2016 amendment added the last two sentences of (12).

The 2017 amendment, in (7), inserted “and after July 1, 2015, on all taxable property of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District” in the fifth sentence, and substituted “Section 37-59-107, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be levied upon all of the taxable property within the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District” for “Section 37-59-101, Mississippi Code of 1972, shall be levied upon all of the taxable property within the former Oktibbeha County School District” in the last sentence”; in (8), inserted “periodically” near the end of the first sentence, substituted “publish each resolution of necessity and intent to issue any bonds” for “publish notice of the issuance of the bonds” in the second sentence, substituted “date and time of the meeting at which” for “date on which” in the third and fourth sentences, in the fourth sentence, substituted “conservator is to take final” for “conservator takes final” and inserted “applicable,” inserted “37-59-11” in the fifth sentence, inserted “of the Oktibbeha County School District” in the sixth sentence, substituted “levied upon all taxable property within the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District” for “levied only upon the taxable real property that was within the former Oktibbeha County School District” in the eighth sentence, and deleted the former last sentence, which read: “The tax for the bonds may not be imposed on the real property within the former Starkville School District”; in (9), inserted “periodically” and “in one or more series” in the first sentence, substituted “publish each resolution of necessity and intent to issue bonds” for “publish notice of the issuance of the bonds” in the third sentence, substituted “date and time of the meeting at which” for “date on which” in the fourth and fifth sentences, inserted “37-59-11” in the sixth sentence, and inserted “of the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District” in the seventh sentence; rewrote the second sentence of (10), which read: “Any debt assumed by the Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District secured by a special ad valorem tax shall be secured by and payable from a special ad valorem tax levied on taxable property in the former Starkville School District and the former Oktibbeha County School District, by its respective levying authority”; and made minor stylistic changes.

§ 37-7-104.4. Administrative consolidation of Montgomery County and Winona Municipal Separate School Districts into new countywide separate school district designated Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District; procedure.

  1. In Montgomery County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2016, two (2) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of those school districts in the county into one (1) new countywide municipal separate school district to be designated as Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Montgomery County School District and the Winona Municipal Separate School District, effective on July 1, 2018. At such time that the administrative consolidation becomes effective, the central administrative office of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District shall be located in Winona, Mississippi.
  2. As soon as practicable, a financial advisor and/or other facilitator with school district experience may be assigned by the Mississippi Department of Education to oversee the budgeting and financial matters relating to the consolidation of the districts slated for consolidation. The financial advisor and/or facilitator may, at the discretion of the Mississippi Department of Education, continue duties for one (1) year after the consolidation to ensure that all financial matters are in place. All financial expenditures of districts that are closing must be approved by the financial advisor and/or facilitator. If the superintendent and/or school board approves expenditures outside of this approval, they shall be personally liable for the excess expenditures. The State Board of Education shall determine the compensation to be paid to the financial advisor and/or facilitator which shall be paid by the local school district to which the financial advisor and/or facilitator is assigned.
    1. On or before September 1, 2017, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school board of the Winona Municipal Separate School District and the local school board of the Montgomery County School District with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section.
    2. In the new Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District, there shall be a new countywide municipal separate school district board of trustees comprised of five (5) members, which shall consist of the existing members of the Board of Trustees of the Winona Municipal Separate School District. However, when consolidation becomes effective, the two (2) appointed board members of the Winona Municipal Separate School District whose terms are nearest to expiration shall expire on January 1, 2019, shall thereafter become elected positions to be filled by the election of board members in a manner prescribed in subparagraph (ii) of this paragraph (b). The new countywide municipal separate school district board of trustees of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District shall be comprised as follows:
      1. The three (3) members of the existing Board of Trustees of the Winona Municipal Separate School District appointed by the Board of Aldermen of the City of Winona with the most years remaining in their terms shall serve until the expiration of such appointed term and thereafter, appointments shall each be selected for a term of four (4) years beginning on January 1 of the year next succeeding the appointment;
      2. The two (2) members of the board elected after the appropriate appointments become permanently elected positions, shall be elected for a term of four (4) years by the electors of Montgomery County residing outside of the Winona corporate limits who shall be residents of that territory and who shall be elected in an election held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2018, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the elected members will take office on January 1, 2019. All subsequent members of the board elected from the territory outside of the Winona corporate limits shall be elected for a term of four (4) years at the regular general election held on the first Monday in November next preceding the expiration of the term of office of the respective member or members, and shall take office on January 1 next succeeding the election; and
      3. The Board of Supervisors of Montgomery County and the State Board of Education, with the assistance of the Joint Legislative Committee on Performance Evaluation and Expenditure Review (PEER), shall apportion the territory of the new consolidated school district located outside the Winona corporate limits into two (2) new proportionately equal single member board of trustee election districts. The board of supervisors shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each school district in the county, the new district lines will thereafter be effective for the November 2018 special election. Any school board member of the former school districts residing in the proper territory shall be eligible for appointment or election to the new Board of Trustees for Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District.
    3. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in the county that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective immediately upon action of the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into one (1) consolidated school district by July 1 following the motion to consolidate. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education.
    1. On July 1, 2018, following the motion of the State Board of Education to consolidate school districts in Montgomery County, the Montgomery County School District shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of the school district located in such former school district shall be transferred to the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District as of July 1, 2018.
    2. The new board of trustees of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for operations, teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel for the 2018-2019 school year and each school year thereafter.
    3. The superintendent of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District shall be appointed by the board and is authorized to appoint an assistant superintendent, but in no instance shall the administrative leadership of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District exceed three (3) assistant superintendents to be appointed by the superintendent of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District.
    4. It shall be the responsibility of the board of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the respective new reorganized district, and the board of trustees may use staff from the former school district to prepare the budget. Any transfer of the assets, real or personal property of the Montgomery County School District mandated by this section shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by this section to effectuate the administrative consolidation.
    5. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor newly selected board of trustees of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. The appeal shall be taken in the same manner as appeals are taken from judgments or decisions of the board of supervisors as provided in Section 11-51-75, the provisions of which shall be fully applicable to appeals taken hereunder. The board of trustees of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District shall not pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order until the time for an appeal therefrom has expired, nor shall the board pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order from which an appeal is taken until said appeal has been finally determined.
  3. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  4. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Montgomery County pursuant to the requirements of this section. Beginning with the insurance cafeteria plan year of November 1, 2018, the consolidated districts shall fall under all insurance plans and policies elected by the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District, including the group term life insurance described in Section 25-15-9(7).
  5. The County Board of Education and the Superintendent of Education of the former Montgomery County School District and the local school board and Superintendent of Schools of the Winona Municipal Separate School District shall cooperate with the State Department of Education, as soon as practicable after July 1, 2016, for the planning and transition of programs, services and alignment of curriculum for the administratively consolidated school districts.
  6. It shall be the responsibility of the Board of Supervisors of Montgomery County to provide office, furnishing and utilities for the administrative Office of the Superintendent of the Winona-Montgomery Consolidated School District.
  7. One (1) year prior to the date of consolidation, a financial advisor and/or other facilitator with school district experience may be assigned by the Mississippi Department of Education to oversee the budgeting and financial matters relating to the consolidation of the districts slated for consolidation. The financial advisor and/or facilitator may, at the discretion of the Mississippi Department of Education, continue duties for one year after the consolidation to ensure that all financial matters are in place. All financial expenditures of districts that are closing must be approved by the financial advisor and/or facilitator. If the superintendent and/or school board approves expenditures outside of this approval, they shall be personally liable for the excess expenditures. The State Board of Education shall determine the compensation to be paid to the financial advisor and/or facilitator which shall be paid by the local school district.

HISTORY: Laws, 2016, ch. 465, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2016.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a typographical error. In (3)(b)(iii), “2018” was substituted for “2017.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 5, 2016, meeting.

§ 37-7-104.5. Administrative consolidation of Lumberton Public School District; agreement between school boards of Lumberton Public, Lamar County and Poplarville Separate School Districts to abolish and dissolve Lumberton School District; Commission on Administrative Consolidation of the Lumberton Public School District created; composition and purpose.

  1. Not later than July 1, 2019, the local school boards of the Lumberton Public School District, Lamar County School District and Poplarville Separate School District shall, under the authority provided in Section 37-7-103, enter into an agreement, by which the approval of such agreement shall be spread upon each board’s minutes of their regularly scheduled meetings or at special meetings called for the specific purpose of such agreement, to abolish and dissolve the Lumberton School District and its central administrative office to be effective for the start of the 2019-2020 school year. The agreement between each school board made parties thereto must consider:
    1. The composition of the district boundaries of the Lumberton Public School District, as it existed on January 1, 2016, to ensure that the student population to be transferred to the Lamar County School District and Poplarville Separate School District does not disparately impact the desegregation of either school district entering into agreement;
    2. The territory embraced by Lumberton, Mississippi, located within the bounded territory of Lamar County, from which the school district to be abolished by agreement draws a portion of its student population, shall be absorbed into the boundary lines of the Lamar County School District, which shall spread a legal description of the district’s new boundaries upon its minutes. It shall be the responsibility of the board of supervisors of such county to apportion the school district into five (5) new single-member board of education election districts, which shall be consistent with the apportioned population of the existing Lamar County School District and that portion of the former Lumberton Public School District situated within Lamar County as the former district existed on July 1, 2016. The board of supervisors of the county shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each appropriate school district in the county, the new district lines will thereafter be effective; and
    3. The territory embraced by Lumberton, Mississippi, located within the bounded territory of Pearl River County, from which the school district to be abolished by agreement draws a portion of its student population, shall be absorbed into the boundary lines of the Poplarville Separate School District as added territory, which shall spread a legal description of the district’s new boundaries with added territory upon its minutes. It shall be the responsibility of the municipal governing authority having jurisdiction over the territory wherein the Poplarville Separate School District is located to provide residents of the added territory with representation on the school board as authorized under the provisions of Section 37-7-203(1), which shall be consistent with the apportioned population of the existing Poplarville Separate School District and the percentage of the student population from that portion of the former Lumberton Public School District situated in Pearl River County within the added territory of the Poplarville Separate School District as the former district existed on July 1, 2016. The municipal governing authority shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each appropriate school district in the county, the new member districts will thereafter be effective; and
    1. There is hereby created and established an advisory council to be known as the Commission on the Administrative Consolidation of the Lumberton Public School District. The commission shall be composed of eleven (11) members as follows:
      1. The State Superintendent of Education, or his designee, who shall serve as Chairman of the Commission;
      2. The Superintendent of the Lumberton Public School District;
      3. The Superintendent of Education of the Lamar County School District;
      4. The Superintendent of the Poplarville Separate School District;
      5. Two (2) members of the Lamar County Board of Education to be appointed by the Lamar County Board of Education;
      6. One (1) member of the Board of Trustees of the Poplarville Separate School District to be appointed by the Board of Trustees of the Poplarville Separate School District;
      7. One (1) member of the Board of Trustees of the Lumberton Public School District to be appointed by the Board of Trustees of the Lumberton Public School District;
      8. One (1) resident of the area which comprises the Lumberton Public School District to be appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Education;
      9. One (1) resident of the area which comprises the Lamar County School District to be appointed by the Lamar County Board of Supervisors; and
      10. One (1) resident of the area which comprises the Poplarville Separate School District to be appointed by the Pearl River Board of Supervisors.
    2. The Commission on the Administrative Consolidation of the Lumberton Public School District shall meet within thirty (30) days of July 1, 2016, upon the call of the State Superintendent of Education and shall hold hearings and meet as necessary and develop a report to the Legislature, the Governor and the State Board of Education on or before December 1, 2017, with the agreed-upon plan for proceeding with the abolition and dissolving of the Lumberton Public School District, which shall include a reasonable effort to maintain and operate a school in the former Lumberton Public School District by which students desiring may, in the discretion of the parents of such students, attend.
    3. The plan may provide an option for students enrolled in the schools of the Lumberton Public School District on May 1, 2017, and children registered for kindergarten on that date with the Lumberton Public School District may be granted an automatic transfer by the Lamar County Board of Education or the Poplarville School Board, as determined by the agreed-upon plan.
  2. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing or maintenance of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 2016, ch. 463, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2016.

§ 37-7-104.6. Administrative consolidation of Leflore County and Greenwood Municipal Separate School Districts into new countywide school district designated Greenwood-Leflore School District; procedure.

  1. In Leflore County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2016, two (2) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of those school districts in the county into one (1) new countywide school district to be designated as Greenwood-Leflore School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Leflore County School District and the Greenwood Municipal Separate School District, effective on July 1, 2019. At such time that the administrative consolidation becomes effective, the central administrative office of the Greenwood-Leflore School District shall be current Greenwood Public School District Central Office, located in Greenwood, Mississippi.
  2. As soon as practicable, a financial advisor and/or other facilitator with school district experience may be assigned by the Mississippi Department of Education to oversee the budgeting and financial matters relating to the consolidation of the districts slated for consolidation. The financial advisor and/or facilitator may, at the discretion of the Mississippi Department of Education, continue duties for one (1) year after the consolidation to ensure that all financial matters are in place. All financial expenditures of districts that are closing must be approved by the financial advisor and/or facilitator. If the superintendent and/or school board approves expenditures outside of this approval, they shall be personally liable for the excess expenditures. The State Board of Education shall determine the compensation to be paid to the financial advisor and/or facilitator which shall be paid by the local school district to which the financial advisor and/or facilitator is assigned.
    1. On July 1, 2018, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school boards of the Leflore County School District and the Greenwood Municipal Separate School District with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section. The State Board of Education shall require the administrative consolidation of Leflore County School District and the Greenwood Municipal Separate School District on or before July 1, 2019. In the new Greenwood-Leflore School District, there shall be a new phased-in County Board of Education comprised of five (5) members elected to staggered terms of office from single member supervisors districts in the manner prescribed in this subsection. Current members of the Board of Trustees of the Greenwood Public School District serving on November 1, 2017, shall continue in office as the new County Board of Education of the Greenwood-Leflore School District until their successors are elected as follows:
      1. The two (2) appointed board members of the Greenwood Public School District whose terms are nearest to expiration shall expire on January 1, 2019, and thereafter become permanently elected positions to be filled by persons elected as board members from Supervisors Districts 2 and 3 in a November 2018 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2019, for a term of four (4) years;
      2. The final two (2) appointed board members of the Greenwood Public School District whose terms are the farthest removed from expiration shall expire on January 1, 2020, and thereafter become permanently elected positions to be filled by persons elected as board members from Supervisors Districts 4 and 5 in a November 2019 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2020, for a term of four (4) years; and
      3. One (1) appointed board member of the Greenwood Public School District whose term is next nearest to expiration shall expire on January 1, 2021, and thereafter become a permanently elected position to be filled by a person elected as a board member from Supervisors District 1 in a November 2020 election held for that purpose, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-203, and the newly elected members will take office on January 1, 2021, for a term of four (4) years.
    2. All subsequent members shall be elected for a term of four (4) years at the regular general election held on the first Monday in November next preceding the expiration of the term of office of the respective members, and shall take office on January 1 next succeeding the election.
    3. No previous school board member of the former school district that was placed under conservatorship residing in the proper territory shall be eligible for selection to the new Board of Education for the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District.
    4. The State Board of Education shall declare that the territory embraced by Leflore County, Mississippi, shall be the boundary lines for the territory of the new Greenwood-Leflore School District and shall spread a legal description of the new school district on the minutes of its August 2018 meeting and shall serve the applicable school boards and the board of supervisors with an adequate legal description of these new boundaries. Any school board member of the former school districts residing in the proper supervisors district shall be eligible for election to the new Board of Education for the Greenwood-Leflore School District unless such person was serving as a member of the board when either district subject to consolidation under this section was placed under conservatorship, which shall render the board member ineligible for election.
    5. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in the county that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective immediately upon action of the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into the Greenwood-Leflore School District by July 1, 2019, following the motion to consolidate. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education.
  3. The successor Greenwood-Leflore Board of Education shall appoint a new Superintendent of Schools for the Greenwood-Leflore School District to be selected no later than July 1, 2019, in the manner provided in Section 37-9-13. The position of Greenwood-Leflore Superintendent of Schools shall be an appointive position. The successor Greenwood-Leflore Board of Education shall also employ central office staff for the Greenwood-Leflore School District no later than July 1, 2019.
    1. On January 1, 2020, following the motion of the State Board of Education to consolidate school districts in Leflore County and the Greenwood Municipal Separate School Districts, the Leflore County and the Greenwood Municipal Separate School Districts and the former school boards of those districts shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of the school district located in such former school districts shall be transferred to the new Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District.
    2. The new board of trustees of the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel for the 2019-2020 school year and each school year thereafter.
    3. The new board of trustees for the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District shall appoint the superintendent of schools for the school district. The superintendent of schools for the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District may appoint three (3) assistant superintendents of schools for the district, but in no instance shall the administrative leadership of the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District have more than three (3) assistant superintendents of education. The subsequent superintendent of schools of the consolidated school district shall not be elected, but shall thereafter be appointed by the successor board of trustees in the manner provided in Section 37-9-25. It shall be the responsibility of the successor board of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the new consolidated district, and the successor board of trustees may use staff from the former school districts to prepare the budget. Any proposed order of the State Board of Education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation.
    4. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor newly selected board of trustees of the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. The appeal shall be taken in the same manner as appeals are taken from judgments or decisions of the board of supervisors as provided in Section 11-51-75, the provisions of which shall be fully applicable to appeals taken hereunder. The board of trustees of the Greenwood-Leflore Consolidated School District shall not pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order until the time for an appeal therefrom has expired, nor shall the board pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order from which an appeal is taken until said appeal has been finally determined.
  4. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  5. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Leflore County pursuant to this section. The consolidated districts shall make an election within one (1) year of consolidation concerning the group term life insurance described in subsection (6) of Section 25-15-9.
  6. The County Board of Education and the Superintendent of Education of the former Leflore County School District and the local school board and Superintendent of Schools of the Greenwood-Leflore Public School District shall cooperate with the State Department of Education, as soon as practicable after July 1, 2016, for the planning and transition of programs, services and alignment of curriculum for the administratively consolidated school districts.

HISTORY: Laws, 2016, ch. 464, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2016.

§ 37-7-104.7. Administrative consolidation of Holmes County and Durant Public School Districts into new countywide school district designated Holmes County Consolidated School District; procedure.

  1. In Holmes County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2016, two (2) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of all of those school districts in the county into one (1) new countywide school district to be designated as Holmes County Consolidated School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Holmes County School District and the Durant Public School District, effective on July 1, 2018. At such time that the administrative consolidation becomes effective, the central administrative office of the Holmes County Consolidated School District shall be located in Lexington, Mississippi.
  2. Within two (2) years prior to the date of consolidation, or as soon as practicable after July 1, 2016, a financial advisor and/or other facilitator with school district experience may be assigned by the Mississippi Department of Education to oversee the budgeting and financial matters relating to the consolidation of the districts slated for consolidation. The financial advisor and/or facilitator may, at the discretion of the Mississippi Department of Education, continue duties for one (1) year after the consolidation to ensure that all financial matters are in place. All financial expenditures of districts that are closing must be approved by the financial advisor and/or facilitator. If the superintendent and/or school board approves expenditures outside of this approval, they shall be personally liable for the excess expenditures. The State Board of Education shall determine the compensation to be paid to the financial advisor and/or facilitator which shall be paid by the local school district to which the financial advisor and/or facilitator is assigned.
    1. On or before July 1, 2017, the State Board of Education shall serve the local school boards of the Holmes County School District and the Durant Public School District with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section. The State Board of Education shall provide for the administrative consolidation of Holmes County School District and the Durant Public School District on or before July 1, 2018. In the new Holmes County Consolidated School District, there shall be a new county board of education elected in a November 2017 special election, which shall be called by the Governor for that purpose. The new county board of education shall be elected and the terms of office established as provided in Section 37-5-7(3). The State Board of Education shall declare that the territory embraced by Holmes County, Mississippi, shall be the boundary lines for the territory of the new Holmes County Consolidated School District and shall spread a legal description of the new school district on the minutes of its August 2017 meeting and shall serve the applicable school boards and the board of supervisors with an adequate legal description of these new boundaries. It shall be the responsibility of the board of supervisors of such county to apportion the newly consolidated school district into five (5) new single member board of education election districts, which shall be consistent with the supervisors district lines in the county. The board of supervisors of the county shall thereafter publish the same in some newspaper of general circulation in the county for at least three (3) consecutive weeks and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the school boards of each appropriate school district in the county, the new district lines will thereafter be effective for the November 2017 special election.
    2. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in Holmes County that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective on July 1 following the November 2017 special election of the new school board members. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into the Holmes County Consolidated School District by July 1, 2018, following the election of the new board of trustees. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education on or before July 1 following the election of the new board of trustees.
    1. On July 1, 2018, following the election of the new board of trustees of the Holmes County Consolidated School District, the former county board of education for Holmes County and the former board of trustees of the Durant Public School Districts shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of the school district located in such former school districts shall be transferred to the new Holmes County Consolidated School District.
    2. The new board of trustees of the Holmes County Consolidated School District shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel for the 2018-2019 school year and each school year thereafter.
    3. The new board of trustees for the Holmes County Consolidated School District shall appoint the superintendent of schools for the school district. The superintendent of schools for the Holmes County Consolidated School District may appoint an assistant superintendent of schools for the district, but in no instance shall the administrative leadership of the Holmes County Consolidated School District have more than one (1) assistant superintendent of education. The subsequent superintendent of schools of the consolidated school district shall not be elected, but shall thereafter be appointed by the successor board of trustees in the manner provided in Section 37-9-25. It shall be the responsibility of the successor board of trustees to prepare and approve the budget of the new consolidated district, and the successor board of trustees may use staff from the former school districts to prepare the budget. Any proposed order of the State Board of Education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation.
    4. Any person or school district aggrieved by an order of the successor newly selected board of trustees of the Holmes County Consolidated School District pursuant to the required administrative consolidation may appeal therefrom within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. The appeal shall be taken in the same manner as appeals are taken from judgments or decisions of the board of supervisors as provided in Section 11-51-75, the provisions of which shall be fully applicable to appeals taken hereunder. The board of trustees of the Holmes County Consolidated School District shall not pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order until the time for an appeal therefrom has expired, nor shall the board pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order from which an appeal is taken until said appeal has been finally determined.
  3. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  4. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Holmes County pursuant to this section. The consolidated districts shall make an election within one (1) year of consolidation concerning the group term life insurance described in subsection (6) of Section 25-15-9.
  5. The County Board of Education and the Superintendent of Education of the former Holmes County School District and the local school board and Superintendent of Schools of the Durant Public School District shall cooperate with the State Department of Education, as soon as practicable after July 1, 2016, for the planning and transition of programs, services and alignment of curriculum for the administratively consolidated school districts.

HISTORY: Laws, 2016, ch. 466, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2016.

§ 37-7-104.8. Administrative consolidation of Chickasaw County and Houston Municipal Separate School Districts into new school district designated Chickasaw County School District; procedure.

  1. In Chickasaw County, Mississippi, in which are located, as of January 1, 2017, three (3) school districts, there shall be an administrative consolidation of two (2) of those school districts in the county as a new school district to be designated as Chickasaw County School District which shall consist of the territory of the former Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District, effective on July 1, 2021. At such time that the administrative consolidation becomes effective, the central administrative office of the new Chickasaw County School District shall be located in Houston, Mississippi.
  2. On July 1, 2020, the Superintendent of Schools of the former Houston Municipal Separate School District shall continue to serve in like administrative capacity for the purpose of managing the transition for the consolidation of the former Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District. The said Superintendent of Schools shall be responsible for the administration, management and operation of the school district from July 1, 2020, until July 1, 2021, including, but not limited to, the following activities: (a) merging the existing budgets with the budget of the new consolidated school district; (b) nonrenewal of central office staff as necessary; (c) construction of a new salary scale for licensed and nonlicensed employees; (d) supplemental duties of school district employees; (e) assist local officials with school tax assessment; (f) appointment of assistant superintendents for the new district not to exceed three (3); and (g) veto authority over decisions of the former school boards until the new Chickasaw County Board of Education is in place. The said Superintendent of Schools shall cooperate with the State Department of Education, as soon as practicable after July 1, 2017, for the planning and transition of programs, services and alignment of curriculum for the administratively consolidated school districts.
  3. On July 1, 2020, the State Board of Education shall serve the Chickasaw County Board of Education and the Board of Trustees of the Houston Municipal Separate School District with notice and instructions regarding the timetable for action to be taken to comply with the administrative consolidation required in this section. The State Board of Education shall require the administrative consolidation of the Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District on or before July 1, 2021.
  4. In the new Chickasaw County School District, there shall be an Interim County Board of Education elected in a November 2020 special election which shall be called by the Governor for that purpose. The State Board of Education shall declare that the following territory shall be the election districts for the Interim Chickasaw County Board of Education, and members shall be qualified electors residing in that district: (a) three (3) members shall be elected at large from the territory of the former Houston School District; and (b) two (2) members shall be elected at large from the territory of the former Chickasaw County School District. Members elected in the November 2020 special election shall serve terms of three (3) years beginning on January 1, 2021. There shall be a new Chickasaw County Board of Education for the Chickasaw County School District, elected on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2023, at the same time and in the same manner as the statewide general election is held and conducted, for that purpose. The new county board of education shall be elected and the terms of office established as provided in Section 37-5-7(5). Any school board member of the former school districts residing in the proper territory shall be eligible for election to the new Chickasaw County Board of Education.
  5. The State Board of Education shall declare that the territory embraced by Chickasaw County, Mississippi, excluding the territory of Okolona Separate School District, shall be the boundary lines for the territory of the new Chickasaw County School District and shall spread a legal description of the new school district on the minutes of its August 2020 meeting and shall serve the applicable school boards and the board of supervisors with an adequate legal description of these new boundaries. Any school district affected by the required administrative consolidation in the county that does not voluntarily consolidate as ordered by the State Board of Education shall be administratively consolidated by the State Board of Education, to be effective immediately upon action of the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall promptly move on its own motion to administratively consolidate a school district which does not voluntarily consolidate in order to enable the affected school districts to reasonably accomplish the resulting administrative consolidation into the Chickasaw School District by July 1, 2021, following the motion to consolidate. The affected school districts shall comply with any consolidation order issued by the State Board of Education.
  6. The Interim Chickasaw County Board of Education shall conduct a search for a new Superintendent of Schools for the Chickasaw County School District to be selected no later than July 1, 2021, in the manner provided in Section 37-9-13 and the Superintendent of Schools serving on that date may be selected to continue in office. The position of Chickasaw County Superintendent of Schools shall be an appointive position. No superintendent serving in a school district placed under conservatorship shall be eligible for appointment as a superintendent or assistant superintendent in the new Chickasaw County School District. The Interim Chickasaw County Board of Education shall also employ central office staff for the Chickasaw County School District no later than July 1, 2021, or as soon thereafter as is practicable.
  7. On January 1, 2021, following the motion of the State Board of Education to consolidate school districts in Chickasaw County and the Houston Municipal Separate School Districts, the Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District and the former school boards of those districts shall be abolished. All real and personal property which is owned or titled in the name of the school district located in such former school districts shall be transferred to the new Chickasaw County School District. The Superintendent of Schools and the County Board of Education of the new Chickasaw County School District shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers, principals, clerical and administrative staff personnel for the 2020-2021 school year and thereafter. It shall be the responsibility of the Superintendent of Schools and the County Board of Education of the new Chickasaw County School District to prepare and approve the budget of the new reorganized district. Any proposed order of the State Board of Education directing the transfer of the assets, real or personal property of an affected school district in the county, shall be final and conclusive for the purposes of the transfer of property required by such administrative consolidation.
  8. From and after July 1, 2021, all outstanding debt of the former Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District shall be assumed by and become the debt of the new Chickasaw County School District. Any debt assumed by the Chickasaw County School District secured by a special ad valorem tax shall become secured by and payable from a mandatory, special ad valorem tax which shall be levied on all taxable property in the territory of the former Houston Municipal Separate School District or the former Chickasaw County School District, as the case may be, by the levying authority of the new Chickasaw County School District. It is the intent of the Legislature that any such pledges of the former school districts will remain in effect and that the pledged funds will be available to the new Chickasaw County School District to pay its debt to which the funds are pledged. The Board of Supervisors of Chickasaw County shall be the “levying authority” for the new Chickasaw County School District.
  9. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the closing of any school or school facility, unless the facility is an unneeded administrative office located within a school district which has been abolished under the provisions of this section. All administrative consolidations under this section shall be accomplished so as not to delay or in any manner negatively affect the desegregation of another school district in the county pursuant to court order.
  10. The State Board of Education, acting through the new Superintendent of Schools, shall promulgate rules and regulations to facilitate the administrative consolidation of the school districts in Chickasaw County and Houston, Mississippi, pursuant to this section. The consolidated district shall make an election within one (1) year of consolidation concerning the group term life insurance described in Section 25-15-9(7).
  11. For the initial two (2) years following the administrative consolidation required by this section, conditioned on approval by the U.S. Department of Education, the State Department of Education shall grant a waiver of accountability and state assessment requirements to the new Chickasaw County School District for the student population enrolled therein from the former Chickasaw County School District and the Houston Municipal Separate School District, when determining the new consolidated school district accreditation level based on the performance and accountability rating model.

HISTORY: Laws, 2017, ch. 436, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

§ 37-7-105. Procedure for alteration of district boundaries or consolidation of school districts by school boards; effect of consolidation as to contracts and taxation.

  1. In cases where two (2) or more school boards determine that it is appropriate that their existing boundaries be altered to provide better service to students, each school board shall enter on its minutes the legal description of new district lines and shall publish the order altering such districts in some newspaper published and having a general circulation in such district(s) once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, which said order shall be duly certified by the president of said school board. If no newspaper be published in said school district, then such order shall be published for the required time in some newspaper having a general circulation therein, and, in addition, a copy of said order shall be posted for the required time at three (3) public places in the school district. The order so published shall contain a provision giving notice that said order shall become final thirty (30) days after the first publication of said notice unless a petition is filed protesting against same within such time. In the event no such petition be filed, the said order shall become final at said time. However, in the event twenty percent (20%) or fifteen hundred (1500), whichever is less, of the qualified electors of any school district altered by such order shall file a petition with the school board, within thirty (30) days after the first publication of said notice, protesting against the alteration of such district, then an election shall be called and held, on order of the school board, by the county election commission(s), after publication of legal notice of such election, which said election shall be held within thirty (30) days after the first publication of the notice of such election. At such election the question shall be submitted to the qualified electors of the district or districts in which a petition is filed as to whether or not such district or districts shall be altered as provided in the said order of the school board. If a majority of those voting in said election in each district affected and from which a petition is filed shall vote in favor of the order of the school board then such order shall become final. If a majority of those voting in said election in any district from which a petition is filed shall vote against the order of the school board then such order shall be void and of no effect and no further attempt to make the proposed change in such district shall be made for a period of at least two (2) years after the date of said election.
  2. When the orders of all boards adopting the new lines have been entered and are final, all orders shall be submitted to and considered by the State Board of Education as prescribed in Section 37-7-113, Mississippi Code of 1972. If the new lines are approved by the State Board of Education, the new district lines shall be submitted to the Attorney General of the United States for preclearance or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia for a declaratory judgment in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. In the event the change in the school district lines are either precleared by the United States Department of Justice, or approved by the United States District Court, the State Board of Education shall formally declare the new lines as the new boundaries of the school districts.
  3. Should two (2) or more school districts determine that they wish to consolidate, the following actions shall be taken by the districts to perfect this consolidation: (a) Each board shall state its intent to consolidate with the other district or districts by passing a resolution of the board to that effect and spreading it on the minutes of the districts; and (b) each school board shall publish the order consolidating such districts in some newspaper having a general circulation in such district(s) once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks, which said order shall be duly certified by the president of said school board. The order so published shall contain a provision giving notice that said order shall become final thirty (30) days after the first publication of said notice unless a petition is filed protesting against same within such time. In the event no such petition be filed, the said order shall become final on said date. However, in the event twenty percent (20%) or fifteen hundred (1500), whichever is less, of the qualified electors of any one (1) of the school districts affected by the proposed consolidation shall file a petition with the applicable school board, within thirty (30) days after the first publication of said notice, protesting against the consolidation of such district or districts, then an election shall be called and held in such school districts where petitions were filed, on order of the school board, by the county election commission(s), after publication of legal notice of such election, which said election shall be held within thirty (30) days after the first publication of the notice of such election. At such election the question shall be submitted to the qualified electors of any district or districts in which petitions were filed as to whether or not such district or districts shall be consolidated as provided in the said order of the school boards. If a majority of those voting in said election shall vote in favor of the order of the school boards then such order shall become final. Should less than a majority of the electors of any single school district vote in favor of the adoption of the proposed consolidation, such school district shall not participate in any voluntary consolidation as authorized in this subsection, and the proposed consolidation plan adopted by such districts shall be void.

    After the order of the local school boards becomes final, it shall be submitted to and considered by the State Board of Education. If approved by the State Board of Education, the consolidation shall be submitted by the local school boards to the appropriate federal agencies for approval. After all preclearance has been received, the State Board of Education shall declare the new boundaries of the consolidated school district and all action shall proceed as outlined under law using the new boundaries.

    Upon preclearance of such consolidation, all school boards shall approve a joint resolution for the election of five (5) new board members from single member districts as provided by law. These elections shall be scheduled prior to May 1 of the year in which the consolidation is to become effective. The new consolidated district shall become effective on July 1 of that same year. The superintendent of any district created through consolidation shall be appointed if all of the school districts which are consolidating had previously appointed their superintendents. The superintendent of any district created through consolidation shall be elected if all of the school districts which are consolidating had previously elected their superintendents. In the event two (2) or more school districts consolidating under the provisions of this section shall have previously appointed one or more superintendents and elected the remainder, the superintendent shall be elected or appointed in accordance with the method utilized by the consolidating school district or districts with the larger or largest student populations. The superintendent shall begin work as the superintendent on July 1 of such year when the consolidation becomes effective. The order to consolidate shall invalidate the contracts of the superintendents of the preceding districts and shall terminate the term of the superintendent if that person was elected. The order to consolidate shall invalidate the term of any school board member beyond July 1 of that year whether they are elected or appointed. Any school board member from any school district may be eligible to run for election to the new consolidated school board.

    Each school board shall be responsible for establishing the contracts for teachers and principals for the next school year with the consultation of the successor school board if they have been selected at the time such decisions are to be made. The selection of administrator in the central administration office shall be the responsibility of the successor school board. No existing dates for renewal of contracts shall invalidate the responsibility of the successor school board in taking such action. The successor school board may enter into these contracts at any time following their election, but no later than July 1 of that year. It shall also be the responsibility of the successor school board to prepare and approve the budget of the new district. The successor school board may use staff from the existing districts to prepare the budget. The school board shall have authority to approve the budget prior to the July 1 date and shall follow the time line established for budget preparation under the law. Should either district at the time of consolidation have more liabilities than assets, then the successor school board shall be authorized to levy an ad valorem tax upon the taxable property in the territory of the district where the deficit exists, a tax not to exceed five percent (5%) of the existing tax levy for the sole purpose of reducing the deficit. When the deficit is eliminated, then such tax levy shall be terminated. Any taxes levied to bring about the equalization of funding, to equalize pay scales or levied in the territory of a newly created district where a deficit exists, shall constitute a “new program” for the purposes of ad valorem tax limitations as prescribed in Sections 27-39-321 and 37-57-107, Mississippi Code of 1972.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 53; Laws, 1991, ch. 471, § 2, eff August 14, 1991 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1990, Chapter 589, § 47, amended this section effective July 1, 1990, provided that the Legislature, by concurrent resolution adopted by the House and Senate in session prior to July 1, 1990, declare that sufficient funds were dedicated and made available for the implementation of Chapter 589. However, funds were not made available by the Legislature prior to July 1, 1990, and by direction of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Mississippi the amendatory provisions were not implemented. The text of the amendment can be found in the Advance Sheet Acts of the 1990 Legislative Session published by the Secretary of State’s Office, Jackson, Mississippi.

The United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1991, ch. 471, § 2, on August 14, 1991.

Cross References— State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Federal Aspects—

Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, see 52 USCS § 10304.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Relationship to other laws.

3. —Section 37-7-103.

1. In general.

A public school board had the authority to consolidate schools within its district and to reassign students en masse; the plan was not a “reorganization of the school district” within the meaning of §37-7-105. Section37-7-105 and its petition, publication and referendum procedures do not apply to everything the school board may wish to abolish, alter or reorganize. The statute applies only where the school board “abolishes, alters or reorganizes a school district.” The phrase “school district” imports the geographic boundaries of the district and perhaps the corporate organization or structure thereof. The school board’s plan did not alter the existing structure of the school district, which remained a county-wide district, and did not reorganize corporate structure, and therefore §§37-7-103 and 37-7-105 did not apply. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

2. Relationship to other laws.

The general language of Code 1972 §37-7-605 [repealed], providing that additional territory adjoining a municipal separate school district may be added to any municipal separate school district by the county board of education, presupposes that the county board of education will comply with the requirements of Code 1972 §37-7-105 as to what the county board must do in order to tender “good title” to the territory which it is requesting be added to the municipal separate school district, including the requirement that the county board publish its order altering the district. Strong v. Pearl Municipal Separate School Dist., 350 So. 2d 1388, 1977 Miss. LEXIS 2255 (Miss. 1977).

3. —Section 37-7-103.

Section37-7-105 merely establishes procedural requisites that must be met in carrying out the general grant of authority contained §37-7-103. If, under §37-7-103, the school board decides to “reorganize, change or alter the boundaries” of the district, §37-7-105 requires that it publish its intention to do so and receive petitions from objectors. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 56, 57.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 45-48, 110 et seq.

Law Reviews.

Miller, Who shall rule and govern? Local legislative delegations, racial politics, and the Voting Rights Act. 102 Yale L. J. 105, October 1992.

§ 37-7-107. Abolition of school district pursuant to petition filed by electorate.

If a petition signed by two-thirds (2/3) of the qualified electors of an existing school district shall be filed with the school board requesting that such district be abolished, then the school board shall enter an order abolishing such school district. Such order shall become final without publication thereof upon such date as may be fixed by the school board but not later than July 1 next succeeding the date of such order.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 54, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 56, 57.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 110 et seq.

§ 37-7-109. Annexation of territory to different district or reorganization into new district pursuant to petition filed by electorate; effect upon outstanding bonds or other indebtedness.

If a petition signed by a majority of the qualified electors of specifically described territory of an existing school district shall be filed with the school board requesting that said described territory be taken from such existing district and annexed to an adjacent district, or reorganized into a new school district, the said school board, after consideration thereof, and with the consent and approval of the school board of the district to which such territory is to be annexed, if such be the case, shall have the power and authority, in its discretion, to take such territory from the existing district and annex same to the adjacent district, or to create a new school district of such specifically described territory. However, before doing so, the school board must find and determine that the taking of the territory from the existing school district will not seriously interfere with or impair the efficiency of such school district, and all orders adopted under the provisions of this section shall be invalid unless such finding and determination be made. Any order adopted under the provisions of this section shall become final without publication thereof upon such date as may be fixed by the school board but not later than the first day of July next succeeding the date of such order. The taking of territory from existing school districts under the provisions of this section shall not release the property in such territory from assessment and liability for the payment of the outstanding bonds or other indebtedness of the district from which the territory is taken and it shall be the duty of the board of supervisors to continue to levy taxes on such territory in an amount sufficient to pay such territory’s pro rata part of all outstanding bonds or other indebtedness existing at the time the territory is taken from such district. In addition thereto, the territory involved shall become liable for its pro rata part of the outstanding bonds or other indebtedness of the district to which it is annexed and taxes shall be levied thereon for the payment thereof to the same extent as taxes are levied upon the other territory of such district.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 55, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Where a municipal separate school district was reconstituted in accordance with the law without any added territory, and thereafter the county school district was abolished and its territory accepted by and annexed to the municipal school district, all in strict accord with the relevant statutes, municipal authorities rather than county authorities were thereafter the proper parties to assess and collect school taxes throughout the county. Winston County v. Woodruff, 187 So. 2d 299, 1966 Miss. LEXIS 1341 (Miss. 1966).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

There presently exists no statutory authority by which school board may split an existing district into two or more parts and thus create more school districts; however, electors of city desiring its own district may, pursuant to Section 37-7-109, initiate petition to have it established as separate district. Willis, Jan. 27, 1994, A.G. Op. #94-0029.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 56, 57.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 45-48.

§ 37-7-111. Effect of abolition or alteration of district upon bonds or other indebtedness of district; territory of abolished district to be annexed to another district.

When any school district is abolished or altered under the provisions of this article, the abolition or alteration thereof shall not impair or release the property of such school district from liability for the payment of the bonds or other indebtedness of such district and it shall be the duty of the board of supervisors of said county to levy taxes on the property of said district so abolished or altered from year to year according to the terms of such indebtedness until same shall be fully paid. No existing school district shall be abolished unless the territory comprising such district shall be annexed to another district in the same order abolishing the former district.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 56, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Where a municipal separate school district was reconstituted in accordance with the law without any added territory, and thereafter the county school district was abolished and its territory accepted by and annexed to the municipal school district, all in strict accord with the relevant statutes, municipal authorities rather than county authorities were thereafter the proper parties to assess and collect school taxes throughout the county. Winston County v. Woodruff, 187 So. 2d 299, 1966 Miss. LEXIS 1341 (Miss. 1966).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 53-55.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 109, 111.

§ 37-7-113. Approval of reorganization, abolition or alteration of school district by State Board of Education.

Notwithstanding any of the foregoing provisions, it is hereby expressly provided that no order of the school board reorganizing, abolishing or altering any school district, whether same be taken with or without a petition therefor, shall be final unless and until said proposed reorganization, alteration or abolition shall be submitted to and approved by the State Board of Education. In the event the proposed action shall be disapproved by the State Board of Education, the same shall be void and of no effect. In the event of the filing of any petitions with the school board under the provisions of said sections, the school board shall verify same and make a determination of whether same are signed by the requisite number of qualified electors. The finding of the school board upon such question shall be final and conclusive for the purpose of the submission of said matter to the State Board of Education and the approval or disapproval of the action by said board.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 57, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Although the county board of education, being the trustees in countywide districts are the ones to organize the schools detailing what grades should be taught there, and designating what pupils should attend, this does not mean that reorganization or rearrangement of the district would not be subject to approval by the state educational finance commission. Board of Educ. v. Wilburn, 223 So. 2d 665, 1969 Miss. LEXIS 1289 (Miss. 1969), overruled, In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Sections 37-7-103, 37-7-113 and 37-7-311 allow a school board to organize its schools so as to serve the best interests of the schools and ultimately the students, and to avoid unnecessary duplication. Where the actions of local school boards do nothing to alter the existing geographical features, boundaries, or corporate structure of the school districts there is no necessity to seek State Board of Education approval. Burnham, February 15, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0029.

§ 37-7-115. Appeals from school board orders.

Any person aggrieved by an order of the school board adopted under any of the foregoing provisions may appeal therefrom within ten (10) days from the date of the adjournment of the meeting at which such order is entered. Said appeal shall be taken in the same manner as appeals are taken from judgments or decisions of the board of supervisors as provided in Section 11-51-75, Mississippi Code of 1972, the provisions of which shall be fully applicable to appeals taken hereunder. The State Board of Education shall not pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order until the time for an appeal therefrom shall have expired, nor shall said board pass upon or approve or disapprove any such order from which an appeal is taken until said appeal shall have been finally determined.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6274-06; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 16, § 6; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 58, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

Circuit court lacked jurisdiction over a high school’s attempted appeal of an expulsion decision by a school board because the student’s bill of exceptions lacked the signature of the school board president and, as such, the bill of exceptions did not comply with Miss. Code Ann. §§37-7-115 and11-51-75. M.L.R. v. Pontotoc City Sch. Dist. Bd. of Trs., 46 So.3d 874, 2010 Miss. App. LEXIS 597 (Miss. Ct. App. 2010).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 61, 62.

16A Am. Jur. Legal Forms 2d (Rev), Schools, § 229:23 (notice of appeal of change in school district boundaries).

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 88-95, 110.

§§ 37-7-117 and 37-7-119. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 59, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§37-7-117. [Codes, 1942, § 6274-06.5; Laws, 1959, Ex Sess, ch. 21]

§37-7-119. [Codes, 1942, § 6328-96; Laws, 1958, ch. 308, §§ 1-4]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-117 related to the retroactive nature of alterations to school district boundaries.

Former §37-7-119 related to the validation of school districts as legally existing political subdivisions of the state.

Article 5. Boards of Trustees; Qualifications, Selection and Meetings.

§ 37-7-201. Qualifications for office of trustee.

In order for a person to be eligible to hold the office of trustee of any school district, such person must be a bona fide resident and a qualified elector of such school district, and, in the case of a school district lying in two or more counties, but not including municipal separate school districts, such person must be a bona fide resident and a qualified elector of the territory entitled to such representation on the board.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 7; Laws, 1964, ch. 391, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 410, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 400, eff from and after passage (approved June 24, 1968).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A qualified individual who is not a resident of a city having a separate school district but who resides in the district may be lawfully appointed school board trustee. White, Apr. 9, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0149.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 74, 75.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 204, 205, 209, 210.

§ 37-7-203. Composition of boards of trustees of municipal separate school districts and certain mayor-council forms of government; qualifications, selection, and terms of office of members of boards.

  1. Except as otherwise provided in subsections (3) and (4) of this section, the boards of trustees of all municipal separate school districts created under this chapter, either with or without added territory, shall consist of five (5) members, each to be chosen for a term of five (5) years, but so chosen that the term of office of one (1) member shall expire each year. In the event the added territory of a municipal separate school district furnishes fifteen percent (15%) or more of the pupils enrolled in the schools of such district, then at least one (1) member of the board of trustees of such school district shall be a resident of the added territory outside the corporate limits. In the event the added territory of a municipal separate school district furnishes thirty percent (30%) or more of the pupils enrolled in the schools of such district, then not more than two (2) members of the board of trustees of such school district shall be residents of the added territory outside the corporate limits. In the event the added territory of a municipal separate school district in a county in which Mississippi Highways 8 and 15 intersect furnishes thirty percent (30%) or more of the pupils enrolled in the schools of such district, then the five (5) members of the board of trustees of such school district shall be elected at large from such school district for a term of five (5) years each except that the two (2) elected trustees presently serving on such board shall continue to serve for their respective terms of office. The three (3) appointed trustees presently serving on such board shall continue to serve until their successors are elected in March of 1975 in the manner provided for in Section 37-7-215. At such election, one (1) trustee shall be elected for a term of two (2) years, one (1) for a term of three (3) years and one (1) for a term of five (5) years. Subsequent terms for each successor trustee shall be for five (5) years. In the event one (1) of two (2) municipal separate school districts located in any county with two (2) judicial districts, District 1 being comprised of Supervisors Districts 1, 2, 4 and 5, and District 2 being comprised of Supervisors District 3, with added territory embraces three (3) full supervisors districts of a county, one (1) trustee shall be elected from each of the three (3) supervisors districts outside the corporate limits of the municipality. In the further event that the territory of a municipal separate school district located in any county with two (2) judicial districts, District 1 being comprised of Supervisors Districts 1, 2, 4 and 5, and District 2 being comprised of Supervisors District 3, with added territory embraces four (4) full supervisors districts in the county, and in any county in which a municipal separate school district embraces the entire county in which Highways 14 and 15 intersect, one (1) trustee shall be elected from each supervisors district.

    Except as otherwise provided herein, the trustees of such a municipal separate school district shall be elected by a majority of the governing authorities of the municipality at the first meeting of the governing authorities held in the month of February of each year, and the term of office of the member so elected shall commence on the first Saturday of March following. In the case of a member of the board of trustees who is required to come from the added territory outside the corporate limits as is above provided, such member of the board of trustees shall be elected by the qualified electors of the school district residing in such added territory outside the corporate limits at the same time and in the same manner as is otherwise provided in this article for the election of trustees of school districts other than municipal separate school districts.

    In the event that a portion of a county school district is reconstituted, in the manner provided by law, into a municipal separate school district with added territory and in the event that the trustees to be elected from the added territory are requested to be elected from separate election districts within the added territory, instead of elected at large, by the Attorney General of the United States as a result of and pursuant to preclearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, and in the event the added territory of a municipal separate school district of a municipality furnishes thirty percent (30%) or more of the pupils enrolled in the schools of such district, then two (2) members of the board of trustees shall be residents of the added territory outside the corporate limits of such municipality and shall be elected from special trustee election districts by the qualified electors thereof as herein provided. The board of trustees of the school district shall apportion the added territory into two (2) special trustee election districts as nearly as possible according to population and other factors heretofore pronounced by the courts. The board of trustees of the school district shall thereafter publish the same in a newspaper of general circulation within that school district for at least two (2) consecutive weeks; and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of trustees of the school district, the new district lines shall thereafter be effective. Any person elected from the new trustee election districts constituted herein shall be elected in the manner provided for in Section 37-7-215 for a term of five (5) years. Any vacancy in the office of a trustee elected from such trustee election district, whether occasioned by redistricting or by other cause, shall be filled by appointment of the governing authorities of the municipality, provided that the person so appointed shall serve only until the next general election following his appointment, at which time a person shall be elected for the remainder of the unexpired term in the manner provided in Section 37-7-215.

    In any county organizing a countywide municipal separate school district after January 1, 1965, the trustees thereof to be elected from outside the municipality, such trustees shall be elected by the board of supervisors of such county, and the superintendent of such school district shall have authority to pay out and distribute the funds of the district. In the event a municipal separate school district should occupy territory in a county other than that in which the municipality is located and fifteen percent (15%) or more of the pupils enrolled in the schools of such district shall come from the territory of the district in the county other than that in which the municipality is located, the territory of such county in which the municipality is not located shall be entitled to one (1) member on the board of trustees of such school district. The trustee shall be a resident of the territory of that part of the district lying in the county in which the municipality is not located and shall be elected by the qualified electors of the territory of such county at the same time and in the same manner as is provided for the election of trustees of school districts other than municipal separate school districts having territory in two (2) or more counties.

    All vacancies shall be filled for the unexpired terms by appointment of the governing authorities of the municipality; except that in the case of the trustees coming from the added territory outside the corporate limits, the person so appointed shall serve only until the next general election following his appointment, at which time a person shall be elected for the remainder of the unexpired term in the manner otherwise provided herein.

    No person who is a member of such governing body, or who is an employee of the municipality, or who is a member of the county board of education, or who is a trustee of any public, private or sectarian school or college located in the county, inclusive of the municipal separate school district, or who is a teacher in or a trustee of the school district, shall be eligible for appointment to the board of trustees.

  2. In counties of less than fifteen thousand (15,000) people having a municipal separate school district with added territory which embraces all the territory of a county, one or more trustees of the school district shall be nominated from each supervisors district upon petition of fifty (50) qualified electors of that supervisors district, or twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of such district, whichever number shall be smaller. One (1) trustee must be elected from each supervisors district of the county. In such counties embraced entirely by a municipal separate school district, there shall be no county board of education after the formation of such district, and the county superintendent of education shall act as superintendent of schools of the district and shall be appointed by the board of trustees of that district, and the provisions of subsection (1) of this section and the first paragraph of Section 37-7-211 shall not apply to such districts.
  3. In municipalities designated as having a mayor-council form of government under Chapter 8, Title 21, Mississippi Code of 1972, and having a population in excess of one hundred thousand (100,000) according to the 2000 federal decennial census, the boards of trustees of the municipal separate school district located in the municipality may, if authorized by ordinance of the municipal governing authority, consist of seven (7) members residing in each of the seven (7) wards in the municipality, to be appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the city council as follows: (a) each board member shall reside in the ward from which he is appointed; (b) members serving on March 31, 2010, shall continue to serve until a new term commences and new members shall be selected from wards not currently represented on the board; (c) one (1) of the two (2) additional appointments shall serve a term of five (5) years and one (1) for a term of four (4) years, with all subsequent appointments for a five-year term; and (d) each new appointment shall be made by the mayor and confirmed by the city council of the municipality at the first meeting of the governing authorities held in the month of June following March 31, 2010, and thereafter each year, and the term of office of each member so selected shall commence on the first Saturday of July following.
    1. Beginning in 2017, in any municipal separate school district that is traversed by the Escatawpa River and in which Interstate Highway 10 and Mississippi Highway 63 intersect, the board of trustees of the municipal separate school district shall consist of five (5) members, each to be elected for a term of four (4) years in the manner provided in this subsection. Within forty-five (45) days after July 1, 2017, the municipal governing authority shall apportion the municipal separate school district, including any added territory outside the corporate limits, into five (5) special trustee election districts as nearly equal as possible according to population, incumbency and other factors pronounced by the courts before August 8, 2017. The municipal governing authority shall place upon its minutes the boundaries determined for the new five (5) trustee election districts and shall publish the same in a newspaper of general circulation within the school district for at least three (3) consecutive weeks. After having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the municipal governing authority, the new district lines shall be effective.
    2. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2017, and every four (4) years thereafter, an election shall be held in the municipal separate school district for local school board members from trustee election districts 1, 3 and 5 in the same manner and at the same time as the general municipal election is held and conducted, for the purpose of electing the board of trustees of the municipal separate school district. All members of the board of trustees elected pursuant to this paragraph (b) shall take office on the first Monday of January immediately following the date of their election. However, in order to provide for an orderly transition, the term of each member of the board of trustees serving on July 1, 2017, which otherwise would expire after the first Monday in July 2018, shall expire on the first Monday of January 2018. If no individual qualifies for the elective office of school district trustee, the trustee for that specific trustee district shall be filled by appointment of the municipal governing authority; however, the person so appointed to fill the vacancy may serve only until the first Monday in January 2019, at which time the trustee elected pursuant to this subsection shall take office for the remainder of the unexpired initial term.

      From and after January 1, 2018, any vacancy on the board of trustees shall be filled by appointment by the remaining members of the board of trustees within sixty (60) days after the vacancy occurs. The appointee must be selected from the qualified electors of the trustee election district in which the vacancy occurs. The appointee shall serve until the first Monday of January succeeding the next general municipal election, at which election a member from that trustee election district shall be elected for a full term.

    3. On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 2018, and every four (4) years thereafter, an election shall be held in the municipal separate school district for local school board members from trustee election districts 2 and 4 in the same manner and at the same time as the Congressional mid-term election is held and conducted, for the purpose of electing the board of trustees of the municipal separate school district. All members of the board of trustees elected pursuant to this paragraph (c) shall take office on the first Monday of January immediately following the date of their election. However, in order to provide for an orderly transition, the term of each member of the board of trustees serving on July 1, 2018, which otherwise would expire after the first Monday in July 2018, shall expire on the first Monday of January 2019. If no individual qualifies for the elective office of school district trustee, the trustee for that specific trustee district shall be filled by appointment of the municipal governing authority; however, the person so appointed to fill the vacancy may serve only until the first Monday in January 2020, at which time the trustee elected pursuant to this subsection shall take office for the remainder of the unexpired initial term.

      From and after July 1, 2020, any vacancy on the board of trustees shall be filled by appointment by the remaining members of the board of trustees within sixty (60) days after the vacancy occurs. The appointee must be selected from the qualified electors of the trustee election district in which the vacancy occurs. The appointee shall serve until the first Monday of July succeeding the next general municipal election, at which election a member from that trustee election district shall be elected for a full term.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, §§ 6238-07, 6328-21; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 7; ch. 17, § 1; Laws, 1956, ch. 273; Laws, 1964, ch. 391, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 410, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 400; Laws, 1975, ch. 306; Laws, 1985, ch. 509, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 598, § 3; Laws, 2009, ch. 470, § 2; Laws, 2010, ch. 454, § 1; Laws, 2017, ch. 436, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Editor’s Notes —

Article 1 of this chapter, referred to in this section, was repealed by Laws of 1986, ch. 492, § 50, effective from and after July 1, 1987.

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 22, 2002, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2002, ch. 598 § 3.

By letter dated August 28, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the change in the general election date provided for in ch. 470, Laws of 2009, and this section reflects that change, effective August 28, 2009.

As for the proposed changes from a plurality vote to a majority vote requirement for county school board members, for trustees for certain municipal separate school districts and for trustees for special municipal school districts, and the requirement that a runoff election be held three weeks after the election if no candidate received a majority, the U.S. Attorney General requested additional information from the state. After review of the information provided by the state, the U.S. Attorney General concluded that the state had not met its burden of showing that the proposed changes had neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect, and by letter dated March 24, 2010, objected to the proposed change from plurality to majority vote and the runoff requirement provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009.

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment, in the third paragraph of (1), substituted “the board of trustees of the school district” for “the governing authorities of such municipality” twice, and substituted “the board of trustees of the school district” for “the governing authorities.”

The 2009 amendment, in (1), deleted “the provisions of Article 1 of” preceding “this chapter” in the first sentence of the first paragraph, and substituted “next general election” for “first Saturday of March” in the last sentence of the third and fifth paragraphs; rewrote (2); and made minor stylistic changes throughout.

The 2010 amendment added the exception in (1); and added (3).

The 2017 amendment, in the first sentence of (1), inserted “and (4)” and made a related change; inserted “federal” following “2000” in the first sentence of (3); and added (4).

Cross References —

Eligibility of county electorate to participate in election of county superintendent, see §37-5-71.

Election of trustees elected under provisions of subsection (1) of this section, see §37-7-209 and §§37-7-211 through37-7-219.

Filing of petition of candidacy and affidavit of eligibility under this section, see §37-7-211.

Selection of boards of trustees in certain special municipal county-wide school districts, see §37-7-703.

Subsection (2) of this section, regarding a municipal separate school district embracing an entire county in counties of less than 15,000 population, governing the selection of district school superintendent, see §37-9-13.

Federal Aspects—

Provisions of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, see 52 USCS § 10304.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Constitutionality.

1. In general.

The Mississippi courts had the power to decide whether § 5 of the Voting Rights Act applied to the change in election procedures sought by respondents, and must withhold further implementation of the disputed change until the parties demonstrate compliance with § 5. Both the language and purposes of the Act refute the notion that a state court asked to implement a change in the State’s voting laws cannot inquire whether the change is subject to § 5 but must ignore that circumstance and enter a decree violating federal law. Section 14(b) of the Act, which provides that no court other than the District Court for the District of Columbia shall have jurisdiction to enter a declaratory judgment pursuant to § 5 governs only declaratory judgments approving proposed voting procedure changes. And nothing in the provisions of § 5, requiring an action under that section to be heard by a three-judge federal district court, or in the provisions of § 12(f) of the Act, giving federal district courts jurisdiction of proceedings under that section, negates the presumption, that, at least when the issue arises collaterally, state courts have the power to decide whether a proposed change in election procedures requires preclearance under § 5. Granting state courts such power helps to insure compliance with the preclearance scheme. Hathorn v. Lovorn, 457 U.S. 255, 102 S. Ct. 2421, 72 L. Ed. 2d 824, 1982 U.S. LEXIS 125 (U.S. 1982).

2. Constitutionality.

That part of the statute providing for the selection and term of trustees of consolidated school districts that reads “in which Highways 14 and 15 intersect” was declared unconstitutional and such offensive language would be stricken from the statute; the remaining portion of the statute was declared constitutional. Lovorn v. Hathorn, 365 So. 2d 947, 1978 Miss. LEXIS 2430 (Miss. 1978), cert. denied, 441 U.S. 946, 99 S. Ct. 2167, 60 L. Ed. 2d 1049, 1979 U.S. LEXIS 1857 (U.S. 1979).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

School board vacancy would be filled by appointing qualified elector to serve until first Saturday in March, at which time election to fill remainder of term would be conducted in accordance with Miss. Code Section 37-7-203. Foxworth, Apr. 21, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0188.

The authority to make an appointment to fill a vacancy in a municipal school district with added territory lies with the city council – the mayor and board of aldermen – and not the mayor acting individually. Tisdale, Feb. 3, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0025.

The statute does not, on its face, preclude the appointment of members from added territory consisting of less than 15%, although such appointment is not mandatory. Smith, June 23, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0288.

Once appointed, a trustee of a municipal separate school district serves for a term of five years and can only be removed pursuant to a specific statutory provision. Brahan, Apr. 27, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0239.

A qualified individual who is not a resident of a city having a separate school district but who resides in the district may be lawfully appointed school board trustee. White, Apr. 9, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0149.

A candidate for Trustee of a Municipal Separate School District must meet all of the mandatory statutory requirements in order to qualify, including a properly notarized affidavit filed by 5:00 p.m. on the qualifying deadline, as required by Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-211. If only one person properly qualifies for the office, no election or notice of election is necessary and the person properly qualified shall, if otherwise qualified, be declared elected without opposition. Gregory, February 1, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00057, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 4.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 73 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 204, 205, 209, 210, 213, 214.

§ 37-7-204. Appointment of interim member to fill vacancy in board of trustees for countywide municipal separate school district.

In the event that a vacancy occurs in the office of any elected trustee of a countywide municipal separate school district, and the next regular school board election at which the vacancy may be filled is less than one (1) year from the date of the resignation, the school board of the district may, in its discretion, take action to appoint an interim board member to fill the vacancy until a duly qualified successor takes office. The interim board member shall serve until such time as the successor board member is duly elected to fill the unexpired term, pursuant to an election held at the next regularly scheduled school board election held in the county.

HISTORY: Laws, 1995, ch. 425, § 1, eff from and after August 25, 1995 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated August 25, 1995, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment to this section by Laws of 1995, ch. 425, § 1.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school board member may be appointed only if a vacancy exists, and a vacancy does not exist until the resigning or vacating member has departed office, so the departing member is not entitled to vote on a successor appointment. Johnson, Aug. 8, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0227.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 72 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 255, 271-277.

§ 37-7-205. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1987, ch 307, § 47, eff from and after March 3, 1987.

[Codes, 1942, § 6328-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 7; Laws, 1964, ch. 391, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 410, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 400]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-205 permitted a county board of education to serve as trustees of county-wide school districts.

§ 37-7-207. Selection and term of trustees of consolidated districts.

  1. All school districts reconstituted or created under the provisions of Article 1 of this chapter, and which lie wholly within one (1) county, but not including municipal separate and countywide districts, shall be governed by a board of five (5) trustees. The first board of trustees of such districts shall be appointed by the county board of education, and the original appointments shall be so made that one (1) trustee shall be appointed to serve until the first Saturday of March following such appointments, one (1) for one (1) year longer, one (1) for two (2) years longer, one (1) for three (3) years longer, and one (1) for four (4) years longer. After such original appointments, the trustees of such school districts shall be elected by the qualified electors of such school districts in the manner provided for in Sections 37-7-223 through 37-7-229, with each trustee to be elected for a term of five (5) years. The five (5) members of the board of trustees of such consolidated school district shall be elected from special trustee election districts by the qualified electors thereof, as herein provided. The board of trustees of any such consolidated school district shall apportion the consolidated school district into five (5) special trustee election districts. The board of trustees of such school district shall place upon its minutes the boundaries determined for the new five (5) trustee election districts. The board of trustees shall thereafter publish the same in a newspaper of general circulation within said school district for at least three (3) consecutive weeks; and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of trustees, said new district lines shall thereafter be effective.

    On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, in any year in which any consolidated school district shall elect to utilize the authority to create single member election districts, an election shall be held in each such district in this state for the purpose of electing the board of trustees of such district. At said election the member of the said board from District One shall be elected for a term of one (1) year, the member from District Two shall be elected for a term of two (2) years, the member from District Three shall be elected for a term of three (3) years, the member from District Four shall be elected for a term of four (4) years, and the member from District Five shall be elected for a term of five (5) years. Thereafter, members shall be elected at general elections as vacancies occur for terms of five (5) years each. Trustees elected from single member election districts as provided above shall otherwise be elected as provided for in Sections 37-7-223 through 37-7-229. All members of the said board of trustees shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election. All vacancies which may occur during a term shall be filled by appointment of the consolidated school district trustees, but the person so appointed shall serve only until the next general election following such appointment, at which time a person shall be elected for the remainder of the unexpired term at the same time and in the same manner as a trustee is elected for the full term then expiring. The person so elected to the unexpired term shall take office immediately. Said appointee shall be selected from the qualified electors of the district in which the vacancy occurs. In the event the school district is under conservatorship and no members of the board of trustees remain in office, the Governor shall call a special election to fill the vacancies and the said election will be conducted by the county election commission.

  2. All school districts reconstituted and created under the provisions of Article 1 of this chapter, which embrace territory in two (2) or more counties, but not including municipal separate school districts, shall be governed by a board of five (5) trustees. In making the original appointments, the several county boards of education shall appoint the trustee or trustees to which the territory in such county is entitled, and, by agreement between the county boards concerned, one (1) person shall be appointed to serve until the first Saturday of March following, one (1) for one (1) year longer, one (1) for two (2) years longer, one (1) for three (3) years longer and one (1) for four (4) years longer. Thereafter, such trustees shall be elected as is provided for in Sections 37-7-223 through 37-7-229, for a term of five (5) years. The five (5) members of the board of trustees of such line consolidated school district shall be elected from special trustee election districts by the qualified electors thereof, as herein provided. The existing board of trustees of such line consolidated school district shall apportion the line consolidated school district into five (5) special trustee election districts. The board of trustees shall place upon its minutes the boundaries determined for the new five (5) trustee election districts. The board of trustees shall thereafter publish the same in a newspaper of general circulation within said school district for at least three (3) consecutive weeks; and after having given notice of publication and recording the same upon the minutes of the board of trustees, said new district lines shall thereafter be effective. Provided, however, that in any line consolidated school district encompassing two (2) or more counties created pursuant to Laws, 1953, Extraordinary Session, Chapter 12, Section 8, in which, as a condition precedent to the creation of said district, each county belonging thereto was contractually guaranteed to always have at least one (1) representative on said board, in order that said condition precedent may be honored and guaranteed, in any year in which the board of trustees of such line consolidated school district does not have at least one (1) member from each county or part thereof forming such district, the board of trustees in such district shall be governed by a board of a sufficient number of trustees to fulfill this guarantee, five (5) of whom shall be elected from the five (5) special trustee election districts which shall be as nearly equal as possible and one (1) member trustee appointed at large from each county not having representation on the elected board. In such cases, the board of supervisors of each county shall make written agreement to guarantee the manner of appointment of at least one (1) representative from each county in the district, placing such written agreement on the minutes of each board of supervisors in each county.

    On the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, in any year in which any line consolidated school district shall elect to utilize the authority to create single member election districts, an election shall be held in each such district in this state for the purpose of electing the board of trustees of such district. At said election the member of the said board from District One shall be elected for a term of one (1) year, the member from District Two shall be elected for a term of two (2) years, the member from District Three shall be elected for a term of three (3) years, the member from District Four shall be elected for a term of four (4) years, and the member from District Five shall be elected for a term of five (5) years. Thereafter, members shall be elected at general elections as vacancies occur for terms of five (5) years each. Trustees elected from single member election districts as provided above shall otherwise be elected as provided for in Sections 37-7-223 through 37-7-229. All members of the said board of trustees shall take office on the first Monday of January following the date of their election. In all elections, the trustee elected shall be a resident and qualified elector of the district entitled to the representation upon the board, and he shall be elected only by the qualified electors of such district. All vacancies which may occur during a term of office shall be filled by appointment of the consolidated line school district trustees, but the person so appointed shall serve only until the next general election following such appointment, at which time a person shall be elected for the remainder of the unexpired term at the same time and in the same manner as the trustee is elected for the full term then expiring. The person so elected to the unexpired term shall take office immediately. In the event the school district is under conservatorship and no members of the board of trustees remain in office, the Governor shall call a special election to fill the vacancies and the said election will be conducted by the county election commission.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-07; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 7; Laws, 1964, ch. 391, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 410, § 1; Laws, 1968, ch. 400; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1988, ch. 523, § 1; Laws, 1990, ch. 567, § 1; Laws, 2002, ch. 598, § 4; Laws, 2013, ch. 331, § 3; Laws, 2013, ch. 363, § 3, eff July 16, 2013 (the date of the United States Attorney General’s response to the submission of this section under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965).

Editor’s Notes —

This section was amended by two bills in 2013. The effective date of each of the two bills that amended this section, Chapter 331 (House Bill No. 975) and Chapter 363 (Senate Bill No. 2779), is “from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.” However, after the bills were approved, the United States Supreme Court, in the case of Shelby County v. Holder (June 25, 2013), struck down the coverage formula that determined what jurisdictions are subject to Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, so the coverage formula can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance under Section 5.

Because of the Shelby County decision, the United States Attorney General is not making any determinations under Section 5 on voting or election changes made by states. The Supreme Court did not strike down Section 5, so it is still in effect. Chapter 331 was submitted to the United States Attorney General before the Shelby County decision was rendered. In a letter dated July 9, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 331 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 331, so Chapter 331 became effective on the date of the response letter from the United States Attorney General, July 9, 2013.

Chapter 363 was not submitted before the Shelby County decision, but the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office submitted Chapter 363 to the United States Attorney General, in order to technically meet the requirements of Section 5 and fulfill the condition in the effective date of the bill, which will allow the bill to take effect.

By letter dated July 16, 2013, the United States Attorney General responded that he is not making determinations on the merits of any bill that is submitted under Section 5. The submission of Chapter 363 and the response from the United States Attorney General technically met the requirements of Section 5 and fulfilled the condition in the effective date of Chapter 363, so Chapter 363 became effective from and after July 16, 2013, the date of the United States Attorney General’s response letter. Because that date is later than the date of the response letter for Chapter 331, the version of this section in Chapter 363 is the controlling version of this section.

As set out above, this section reflects the amendments to the section by Chapter 363.

Article 1 of this chapter, referred to in this section, was repealed by Laws of 1986, ch. 492, § 50, effective from and after July 1, 1987.

For present provisions relating to reorganization of school districts, see §37-7-103 et seq.

Laws of 1953, Extraordinary Session, Chapter 12, Section 8, referred to in this section, and codified as §37-7-101, was repealed by Laws of 1986, Chapter 492, § 59, effective from and after July 1, 1987.

Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, amended §37-7-207, effective from and after such time as Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended. Laws of 2002, Chapter 598, § 4, subsequently amended both the version of §37-7-207 in force until Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the version effective from and after the date Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. By letter dated July 22, 2002, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of the section by Laws of 2002, Chapter 598, § 4. However, as of September 1, 2004, Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, had not been effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Consequently, the version of § 37-7-207 that was to become effective from and after the date Laws of 1990, Chapter 567, § 1, was effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, has been omitted from the Code at the direction of Co-Counsel of the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of the Legislature.

Amendment Notes —

The 2002 amendment rewrote (1) and (2) in both versions.

The 2013 amendment (ch. 331), added the last sentence of the second paragraph of (1); and added (3).

The 2013 amendment (ch. 363), added the last sentences of the second paragraphs of (1) and (2).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Attending school in another district.

1. In general.

While school boards should not be allowed to operate indefinitely with less than 5 members, boards must be given a reasonable amount of time in which to find a suitable candidate; thus, a 4-member school board had the authority to approve a bond election and authorize the issuance of the bonds at a meeting which took place only 10 days after the fifth board member resigned. Shipman v. North Panola Consol. Sch. Dist., 641 So. 2d 1106, 1994 Miss. LEXIS 372 (Miss. 1994).

2. Attending school in another district.

Students who live in one school district organized under Ch 12, Laws of 1953, Ex. Session [Code 1942, §§ 6328-01 et seq.], may not attend school in another school district without the consent and approval of the board of trustees of the district wherein such students reside. Hinze v. Winston County Board of Education, 233 Miss. 867, 103 So. 2d 353, 1958 Miss. LEXIS 450 (Miss. 1958).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Appointment must be made to fill vacancy on school board within reasonable period of time; only court of competent jurisdiction can make adjudication as to what constitutes reasonable period of time. Minor, July 22, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0545.

Mississippi Code Annotated Section 37-7-207 clearly and specifically requires county board of supervisors to affirmatively act to apportion consolidated school district into five special trustee election districts upon request of board of trustees of school district. Riddell, Jan. 25, 1994, A.G. Op. #93-1008.

If only one candidate qualifies by the deadline for accepting the petition and affidavit for a trustee candidate in a municipal separate school district, then there will not be an election and the single qualified candidate should be declared elected without opposition and should take office immediately. Fair, February 12, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0057.

In the absence of a court order to the contrary, neither a school board nor a county board of supervisors may postpone an election that is set by statute. Rounsavall, Oct. 5, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0622.

Under this section, one board of supervisors may not unilaterally make an appointment in the absence of an agreement; it is incumbent upon the counties that are affected to come to an agreement, but that agreement should be limited to the “manner” of the appointment (how nominations are to be made, nominee selection criteria, by whom the appointment is to be made, etc.) and should not attempt to limit the applicability of the statute. Clements, Oct. 2, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0553.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 73, 76 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 211-214.

§ 37-7-208. Authorization to expend funds to cover cost and expenses of litigation relating to and implementation of single member school board trustee election districts.

The board of trustees of any consolidated school district may pay from non-minimum program funds the cost and expense of litigation involved by or resulting from the creation of or litigation to create single member school board trustee election districts, and pay from non-minimum program funds the cost or expense to implement any plan, decree or reorganization as approved by the court. Said payments by the board of trustees shall be deemed a “new program” under the provisions of Section 37-57-107, Mississippi Code of 1972, and any additional millage levied for such purpose and the revenue generated therefrom shall be excluded from the tax increase limitation prescribed in Sections 37-57-105 and 37-57-107. The board of supervisors of any county in which there is located such consolidated school district may, in its discretion, contribute out of county general funds to the cost and expense of such litigation and/or the cost of implementing such redistricting plan.

HISTORY: Laws, 1988, ch. 523, § 2, eff from and after March 1, 1989 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the addition of this section).

§ 37-7-209. Election of trustees generally.

All elections of trustees who are elected under the provisions of subsection (1) of Section 37-7-203 shall be held and conducted in the manner and at the time provided for in Sections 37-7-211 through 37-7-219.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 2, eff from and after July 31, 1981 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the amendment of this section).

Cross References —

Alternate method for election of trustees of certain school districts, see §§37-7-221 through37-7-229.

Applicability of this section to election of consolidated or consolidated line district trustees, see §37-7-221.

Selection of trustees in certain special municipal separate school districts, see §§37-7-703 through37-7-717.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 73.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 219-236.

§ 37-7-211. Filing of petition and affidavit by candidate for office of trustee.

  1. The name of any qualified elector who is otherwise eligible under the provisions of subsection (1) of Section 37-7-203 who shall desire to be a candidate for the office of trustee must qualify in the following manner in order to be allowed to be considered for election. By 5:00 p.m. no more than ninety (90) days and not less than sixty (60) days before the election, he shall file with the county election commissioners a petition signed by not less than fifty (50) qualified electors of the area represented by the office which he seeks, either for a full term or an unexpired term, as the case may be, and an affidavit by the candidate offering for election stating his qualifications under the terms of the section. Where there are less than one hundred (100) qualified electors in said area represented by the trustee, it shall only be required that said petition of nomination be signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors in said area. The petition shall contain an affidavit certifying that all signatures are the personal signatures of each person whose name appears on the petition and that each person is a qualified elector.
  2. Unless the petition and affidavit required in subsection (1) of this section are filed by 5:00 p.m. not less than sixty (60) days prior to the election, the name of the candidate shall not be considered in the election, and votes cast for any person who has failed to qualify shall not be counted in the election.
  3. If after the time for candidates to file the petition and affidavit provided for in this section there should be only one (1) person to qualify for the office of trustee, then no election or notice of election shall be necessary and such person shall, if otherwise qualified, be declared elected without opposition.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1977, ch. 425, § 1; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 3; Laws, 1982, ch. 356, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 592, § 17; Laws, 2012, ch. 516, § 1; Laws, 2014, ch. 422, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 28, 2000, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2000, ch. 592, § 17.

By letter dated December 7, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Chapter 516, Laws of 2012.

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment inserted “By 5:00 p.m.” at the beginning of the second sentence in the first paragraph; and inserted “by 5:00 p.m.” in the second paragraph.

The 2012 amendment added the subsection designations; rewrote the first sentence in (1); in (2), substituted “petition and affidavit required in subsection (1) of this section is filed” for “petition and affidavit required above shall be filed” and “sixty (60) days” for “forty (40) days”; and made a minor stylistic change.

The 2014 amendment, in (1), substituted “no more than ninety (90) days and not less than” for “at least” and “fifty (50)” for “twenty-five (25),” and added the third sentence; and in (2), substituted “are” for “is” in the first sentence.

Cross References —

Inapplicability of the first paragraph of this section to counties of less than 15,000 people having a municipal separate school district with added territory which embraces all the territory of a county, see §37-7-203.

Applicability of this section to election of consolidated or consolidated line district trustees, see §37-7-221.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Only school board members who are to be elected through the electoral process must meet the requirements set forth in the statute; these requirements do not apply to persons appointed to hold such office. Huddleston, May 15, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0256.

A candidate for Trustee of a Municipal Separate School District must meet all of the mandatory statutory requirements in order to qualify, including a properly notarized affidavit filed by 5:00 p.m. on the qualifying deadline, as required by Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-211. If only one person properly qualifies for the office, no election or notice of election is necessary and the person properly qualified shall, if otherwise qualified, be declared elected without opposition. Gregory, February 1, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00057, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 4.

§ 37-7-213. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 2013, ch. 516, § 5, eff from and after December 7, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the repeal of this section).

§37-7-213. [Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1977, ch. 410, § 1; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 4, eff from and after July 31, 1981 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Righs Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section).]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-213 related to notice of election of school board trustees.

§ 37-7-215. Time of election and runoff election.

All such elections shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of each year and in the same manner as general state and county elections are held and conducted. In the event a runoff is necessary the runoff shall be held three (3) weeks thereafter.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1978, ch. 469, § 1; Laws, 2009, ch. 470, § 4; Laws, 2012, ch. 516, § 2, eff December 7, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated August 28, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the change in the general election date provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009. As for the proposed changes from a plurality vote to a majority vote requirement for county school board members, for trustees for certain municipal separate school districts and for trustees for special municipal school districts, and the requirement that a runoff election be held three weeks after the election if no candidate received a majority, the U.S. Attorney General requested additional information from the state. After review of the information provided by the state, the U.S. Attorney General concluded that the state had not met its burden of showing that the proposed changes had neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect, and by letter dated March 24, 2010, objected to the proposed change from plurality to majority vote and the runoff requirement provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009.

By letter dated December 7, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Chapter 516, Laws of 2012.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment purported to rewrite the section. However, Section 4 of Chapter 470, Laws of 2009, did not receive preclearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, and the amendments to this section by that act were never given effect.

The 2012 amendment rewrote the section.

Cross References —

Election of trustees from the added territory of certain municipal separate school districts, see §37-7-203.

Method of conducting election, see §37-7-217.

Applicability of this section to election of consolidated or consolidated line district trustees, see §37-7-221.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

With regard to the election of trustees of municipal separate school districts with added territory, clarifying legislation or additional preclearance of the trustee election procedures proposed by Chapter 470, Laws of 2009 (HB 877) is required to give effect to the Chapter 470 amendments, and until such time as additional language is precleared or clarifying legislation is enacted, trustee elections shall proceed as reflected in Sections 37-7-215 and 37-7-217 prior to the enactment of Chapter 470. Atkinson, December 18, 2009, A.G. Op. 09-00700, 2009 Miss. AG LEXIS 428.

§ 37-7-217. Conduct of election; certification of results; runoffs.

  1. The county election commissioners shall indicate on the ballot which of the persons whose names appear thereon are candidates for a full term, and which of such persons, if any, are candidates for an unexpired term or terms.
  2. The qualified electors of each school district operating under Section 37-7-215 shall vote on the date specified in that section and at the special trustee election districts.
  3. A person elected shall assume the duties of his office for the full term on the first day of January if the election is for the full term. A person elected to an unexpired term shall assume office immediately.
  4. The county election commissioners shall forthwith certify the results of the election to the superintendent of the municipal separate or special municipal separate school district, as the case may be, which certificate shall be delivered to such superintendent within five (5) days following the first election.
  5. If a person does not receive a majority of the votes cast at the election, a runoff shall be held between the two (2) persons receiving the highest number of votes at the first election.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 1978, ch. 469, § 2; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 5; Laws, 2009, ch. 470, § 5; Laws, 2012, ch. 516, § 3, eff December 7, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated August 28, 2009, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection to the change in the general election date provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009. As for the proposed changes from a plurality vote to a majority vote requirement for county school board members, for trustees for certain municipal separate school districts and for trustees for special municipal school districts, and the requirement that a runoff election be held three weeks after the election if no candidate received a majority, the U.S. Attorney General requested additional information from the state. After review of the information provided by the state, the U.S. Attorney General concluded that the state had not met its burden of showing that the proposed changes had neither a discriminatory purpose nor a discriminatory effect, and by letter dated March 24, 2010, objected to the proposed change from plurality to majority vote and the runoff requirement provided for in Chapter 470, Laws of 2009.

By letter dated December 7, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Chapter 516, Laws of 2012.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment purported to rewrite the section. However, Section 5 of Chapter 470, Laws of 2009, did not receive preclearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, and the amendments to this section by that act were never given effect.

The 2012 amendment rewrote the section.

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of consolidated line district trustees, see §37-7-221.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Statute contains provisions governing conduct of election and provides that qualified electors of school district will meet, organize, and elect trustees; there is no statutory provision for compensation of individuals who conduct this particular type of election. Gex, Feb. 7, 1990, A.G. Op. #90-0088.

With regard to the election of trustees of municipal separate school districts with added territory, clarifying legislation or additional preclearance of the trustee election procedures proposed by Chapter 470, Laws of 2009 (HB 877) is required to give effect to the Chapter 470 amendments, and until such time as additional language is precleared or clarifying legislation is enacted, trustee elections shall proceed as reflected in Sections 37-7-215 and 37-7-217 prior to the enactment of Chapter 470. Atkinson, December 18, 2009, A.G. Op. 09-00700, 2009 Miss. AG LEXIS 428.

§ 37-7-219. Preparation of list of qualified electors.

  1. For the purpose of holding such an election, it shall be the duty of the county election commissioners to prepare from the records in the office of the county registrar a list of the qualified electors of the school district who are eligible to participate in the election. The list shall be furnished to the election managers in each precinct, together with the ballots and other election supplies.
  2. In the event that any election precinct embraces parts of two (2) or more school districts it shall be the duty of the county election commissioners to prepare from the records in the office of the county registrar separate lists of the qualified electors of each school district who reside in the precinct and who are eligible to participate in the election. The election commissioners shall furnish to the election managers in the precinct separate ballots and separate ballot boxes and separate voting lists for each school district.
  3. For each day spent in carrying out the provisions of Sections 37-7-211 through 37-7-219, the county election commissioners shall be paid at the rate prescribed by law.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-09; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 9; Laws, 1962, ch. 348; Laws, 1966, ch. 411, § 1; Laws, 1966, ch. 412, § 1; Laws, 2012, ch. 516, § 4, eff December 7, 2012 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

By letter dated December 7, 2012, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Chapter 516, Laws of 2012.

Amendment Notes —

The 2012 amendment rewrote (1); and added (2) and (3).

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of consolidated or consolidated line district trustees, see §37-7-221.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Any expenses involved in preparing and printing the ballots and the preparation of the list of qualified electors in connection with an election and a run-off for the trustee for that part of a school district that fell outside the city limits was required to be borne by the school district; however, there was no authority for the compensation of individuals who conducted this particular type of election. Freeland, IV, Apr. 19, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0187.

§ 37-7-221. Election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees; procedure generally.

The election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees shall be held in the manner provided for in Sections 37-7-223 through 37-7-229 rather than the method now provided by Sections 37-7-209 through 37-7-219.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, §§ 6328-11.3, 6328-11.4; Laws, 1960, ch. 304, §§ 1, 2; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 6, eff from and after July 31, 1981 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section).

Cross References —

Election of trustees of school districts generally, see §§37-7-209 through37-7-229.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 56, 57.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 219-236.

§ 37-7-223. Election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees; time and manner of election.

All elections of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of each year in the same manner as general state and county elections are held and conducted.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-11.4; Laws, 1960, ch. 304, § 2; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 7, eff from and after July 31, 1981 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section).

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of trustees of consolidated or consolidated line school districts, see §§37-7-207,37-7-221.

§ 37-7-225. Election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees; filing of petition of nomination by candidate.

The county election commissioners shall place the name of any person eligible to hold the office of trustee on the ballot used in the election, provided that such candidate shall have filed with the county registrar, not more than ninety (90) days and by 5:00 p.m. not less than sixty (60) days prior to the date of such election, a petition of nomination signed by not less than fifty (50) qualified electors of the school district. Where there are less than one hundred (100) qualified electors in said district, it shall only be required that said petition of nomination be signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the qualified electors of such school district. If such person be a candidate for an unexpired term, he shall indicate the term for which he is a candidate in such petition; otherwise he shall be deemed to be a candidate for a full term.

If after the time for candidates to file the petition of nomination provided for herein there should be only one (1) person to qualify for the office of trustee, then no election or notice of election shall be necessary and such person shall, if otherwise qualified, be declared elected without opposition.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-11.4; Laws, 1960, ch. 304, § 2; Laws, 1977, ch. 425, § 2; Laws, 1982, ch. 356, § 2; Laws, 1989, ch. 392, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 592, § 18, eff from and after July 28, 2000, the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to the amendment of this section.

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 28, 2000, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2000, ch. 592, § 18.

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment, in the first paragraph, substituted “the county registrar” for “said election commissioners,” and inserted “by 5:00 p.m.”

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of trustees of consolidated or consolidated line school districts, see §§37-7-207,37-7-221.

§ 37-7-227. Election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees; ballot; determination of results; runoffs.

  1. The county election commissioners shall indicate on the ballot which of the persons whose names appear thereon are candidates for a full term, and which of such persons, if any, are candidates for an unexpired term or terms. The candidate who receives a majority of the votes cast, either for a full term or for an unexpired term or terms, as indicated on the ballot, shall be declared elected, and the person or persons elected to a full term shall assume the duties of his office on the first day of January of the year following such election. The person or persons elected to an unexpired term(s) shall assume office immediately. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast at the election, a runoff shall be held in the same manner three (3) weeks after the election between the two (2) candidates receiving the highest number of votes upon the first ballot.
  2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, if an election for school board trustees occurs on a Tuesday, during a general election, any runoff for such election shall occur three (3) weeks after the election.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-11.4; Laws, 1960, ch. 304, § 2; Laws, 1981, ch. 409, § 8; Laws, 2008, ch. 505, § 1, eff July 21, 2008 (the date the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section).

Editor’s Notes —

On July 21, 2008, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2008, ch. 505.

Amendment Notes —

The 2008 amendment substituted “three (3) weeks after the election” for “on the third Tuesday after the first Monday in November following such election” near the end of (1); added (2); and made minor stylistic changes.

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of trustees of consolidated or consolidated line school districts, see §§37-7-207,37-7-221.

§ 37-7-229. Election of consolidated or consolidated line school district trustees; preparation of list of qualified electors; compensation of election commissioners.

For the purpose of holding such election, it shall be the duty of the county election commissioners to prepare from the records in the office of the county registrar a list of the qualified electors of the school district in which such election is to be held who are eligible to participate in the election. The list shall be furnished to the poll managers in each precinct, together with the ballots and other election supplies.

In the event that any election precinct embraces parts of two (2) or more school districts it shall be the duty of the county election commissioners to prepare from the records in the office of the county registrar separate lists of the qualified electors of each school district who reside in the precinct and who are eligible to participate in the election. The election commissioners shall furnish to the poll managers in the precinct separate ballots and separate ballot boxes and separate voting lists for each school district.

For each day spent in carrying out the provisions of Sections 37-7-225 through 37-7-229 the county election commissioners shall be paid at the rate prescribed by law.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-11.4; Laws, 1960, ch. 304, § 2; Laws, 2017, ch. 441, § 186, eff from and after July 1, 2017.

Amendment Notes —

The 2017 amendment substituted “poll managers” for “election managers” once in the first paragraph and once in the second paragraph; inserted “(2)” near the beginning of the second paragraph; and made minor stylistic changes.

Cross References —

Applicability of this section to election of trustees of consolidated or consolidated line school districts, see §§37-7-207,37-7-221.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

This section does require that the election commissioners of each county prepare separate lists of the qualified electors of each of the single-member election districts for each county election precinct containing part of the school district. Eskridge, August 16, 1996, A.G. Op. #96-0390.

§§ 37-7-231 through 37-7-235. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 45, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§37-7-231. [Codes, 1942, § 6328-22; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 2]

§37-7-233. [Codes, 1942, § 6328-23; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 3]

§37-7-235. [Codes, 1942, § 6328-23.5; Laws, 1964, ch. 418]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-231 related to the organization of the board of trustees of school districts.

Former §37-7-233 provided for meetings of boards of trustees of municipal separate school districts and consolidated school districts.

Former §37-7-235 provided for reimbursement of travel expenses for members of the board of trustees of municipal separate school districts.

Article 7. Boards of Trustees; General Powers and Duties.

§ 37-7-301. General powers and duties.

The school boards of all school districts shall have the following powers, authority and duties in addition to all others imposed or granted by law, to wit:

To organize and operate the schools of the district and to make such division between the high school grades and elementary grades as, in their judgment, will serve the best interests of the school;

To introduce public school music, art, manual training and other special subjects into either the elementary or high school grades, as the board shall deem proper;

To be the custodians of real and personal school property and to manage, control and care for same, both during the school term and during vacation;

To have responsibility for the erection, repairing and equipping of school facilities and the making of necessary school improvements;

To suspend or to expel a pupil or to change the placement of a pupil to the school district’s alternative school or homebound program for misconduct in the school or on school property, as defined in Section 37-11-29, on the road to and from school, or at any school-related activity or event, or for conduct occurring on property other than school property or other than at a school-related activity or event when such conduct by a pupil, in the determination of the school superintendent or principal, renders that pupil’s presence in the classroom a disruption to the educational environment of the school or a detriment to the best interest and welfare of the pupils and teacher of such class as a whole, and to delegate such authority to the appropriate officials of the school district;

To visit schools in the district, in their discretion, in a body for the purpose of determining what can be done for the improvement of the school in a general way;

To support, within reasonable limits, the superintendent, principal and teachers where necessary for the proper discipline of the school;

To exclude from the schools students with what appears to be infectious or contagious diseases; provided, however, such student may be allowed to return to school upon presenting a certificate from a public health officer, duly licensed physician or nurse practitioner that the student is free from such disease;

To require those vaccinations specified by the State Health Officer as provided in Section 41-23-37;

To see that all necessary utilities and services are provided in the schools at all times when same are needed;

To authorize the use of the school buildings and grounds for the holding of public meetings and gatherings of the people under such regulations as may be prescribed by said board;

To prescribe and enforce rules and regulations not inconsistent with law or with the regulations of the State Board of Education for their own government and for the government of the schools, and to transact their business at regular and special meetings called and held in the manner provided by law;

To maintain and operate all of the schools under their control for such length of time during the year as may be required;

To enforce in the schools the courses of study and the use of the textbooks prescribed by the proper authorities;

To make orders directed to the superintendent of schools for the issuance of pay certificates for lawful purposes on any available funds of the district and to have full control of the receipt, distribution, allotment and disbursement of all funds provided for the support and operation of the schools of such school district whether such funds be derived from state appropriations, local ad valorem tax collections, or otherwise. The local school board shall be authorized and empowered to promulgate rules and regulations that specify the types of claims and set limits of the dollar amount for payment of claims by the superintendent of schools to be ratified by the board at the next regularly scheduled meeting after payment has been made;

To select all school district personnel in the manner provided by law, and to provide for such employee fringe benefit programs, including accident reimbursement plans, as may be deemed necessary and appropriate by the board;

To provide athletic programs and other school activities and to regulate the establishment and operation of such programs and activities;

To join, in their discretion, any association of school boards and other public school-related organizations, and to pay from local funds other than minimum foundation funds, any membership dues;

To expend local school activity funds, or other available school district funds, other than minimum education program funds, for the purposes prescribed under this paragraph. “Activity funds” shall mean all funds received by school officials in all school districts paid or collected to participate in any school activity, such activity being part of the school program and partially financed with public funds or supplemented by public funds. The term “activity funds” shall not include any funds raised and/or expended by any organization unless commingled in a bank account with existing activity funds, regardless of whether the funds were raised by school employees or received by school employees during school hours or using school facilities, and regardless of whether a school employee exercises influence over the expenditure or disposition of such funds. Organizations shall not be required to make any payment to any school for the use of any school facility if, in the discretion of the local school governing board, the organization’s function shall be deemed to be beneficial to the official or extracurricular programs of the school. For the purposes of this provision, the term “organization” shall not include any organization subject to the control of the local school governing board. Activity funds may only be expended for any necessary expenses or travel costs, including advances, incurred by students and their chaperons in attending any in-state or out-of-state school-related programs, conventions or seminars and/or any commodities, equipment, travel expenses, purchased services or school supplies which the local school governing board, in its discretion, shall deem beneficial to the official or extracurricular programs of the district, including items which may subsequently become the personal property of individuals, including yearbooks, athletic apparel, book covers and trophies. Activity funds may be used to pay travel expenses of school district personnel. The local school governing board shall be authorized and empowered to promulgate rules and regulations specifically designating for what purposes school activity funds may be expended. The local school governing board shall provide (i) that such school activity funds shall be maintained and expended by the principal of the school generating the funds in individual bank accounts, or (ii) that such school activity funds shall be maintained and expended by the superintendent of schools in a central depository approved by the board. The local school governing board shall provide that such school activity funds be audited as part of the annual audit required in Section 37-9-18. The State Department of Education shall prescribe a uniform system of accounting and financial reporting for all school activity fund transactions;

To enter into an energy performance contract, energy services contract, a shared savings, lease or lease-purchase basis, for energy efficiency services and/or equipment as provided for in Section 31-7-14;

To maintain accounts and issue pay certificates on school food service bank accounts;

(i) To lease a school building from an individual, partnership, nonprofit corporation or a private for-profit corporation for the use of such school district, and to expend funds therefor as may be available from any nonminimum program sources. The school board of the school district desiring to lease a school building shall declare by resolution that a need exists for a school building and that the school district cannot provide the necessary funds to pay the cost or its proportionate share of the cost of a school building required to meet the present needs. The resolution so adopted by the school board shall be published once each week for three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper having a general circulation in the school district involved, with the first publication thereof to be made not less than thirty (30) days prior to the date upon which the school board is to act on the question of leasing a school building. If no petition requesting an election is filed prior to such meeting as hereinafter provided, then the school board may, by resolution spread upon its minutes, proceed to lease a school building. If at any time prior to said meeting a petition signed by not less than twenty percent (20%) or fifteen hundred (1500), whichever is less, of the qualified electors of the school district involved shall be filed with the school board requesting that an election be called on the question, then the school board shall, not later than the next regular meeting, adopt a resolution calling an election to be held within such school district upon the question of authorizing the school board to lease a school building. Such election shall be called and held, and notice thereof shall be given, in the same manner for elections upon the questions of the issuance of the bonds of school districts, and the results thereof shall be certified to the school board. If at least three-fifths (3/5) of the qualified electors of the school district who voted in such election shall vote in favor of the leasing of a school building, then the school board shall proceed to lease a school building. The term of the lease contract shall not exceed twenty (20) years, and the total cost of such lease shall be either the amount of the lowest and best bid accepted by the school board after advertisement for bids or an amount not to exceed the current fair market value of the lease as determined by the averaging of at least two (2) appraisals by certified general appraisers licensed by the State of Mississippi. The term “school building” as used in this paragraph (v)(i) shall be construed to mean any building or buildings used for classroom purposes in connection with the operation of schools and shall include the site therefor, necessary support facilities, and the equipment thereof and appurtenances thereto such as heating facilities, water supply, sewage disposal, landscaping, walks, drives and playgrounds. The term “lease” as used in this paragraph (v)(i) may include a lease-purchase contract;

If two (2) or more school districts propose to enter into a lease contract jointly, then joint meetings of the school boards having control may be held but no action taken shall be binding on any such school district unless the question of leasing a school building is approved in each participating school district under the procedure hereinabove set forth in paragraph (v)(i). All of the provisions of paragraph (v)(i) regarding the term and amount of the lease contract shall apply to the school boards of school districts acting jointly. Any lease contract executed by two (2) or more school districts as joint lessees shall set out the amount of the aggregate lease rental to be paid by each, which may be agreed upon, but there shall be no right of occupancy by any lessee unless the aggregate rental is paid as stipulated in the lease contract. All rights of joint lessees under the lease contract shall be in proportion to the amount of lease rental paid by each;

To employ all noninstructional and noncertificated employees and fix the duties and compensation of such personnel deemed necessary pursuant to the recommendation of the superintendent of schools;

To employ and fix the duties and compensation of such legal counsel as deemed necessary;

Subject to rules and regulations of the State Board of Education, to purchase, own and operate trucks, vans and other motor vehicles, which shall bear the proper identification required by law;

To expend funds for the payment of substitute teachers and to adopt reasonable regulations for the employment and compensation of such substitute teachers;

To acquire in its own name by purchase all real property which shall be necessary and desirable in connection with the construction, renovation or improvement of any public school building or structure. Whenever the purchase price for such real property is greater than Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00), the school board shall not purchase the property for an amount exceeding the fair market value of such property as determined by the average of at least two (2) independent appraisals by certified general appraisers licensed by the State of Mississippi. If the board shall be unable to agree with the owner of any such real property in connection with any such project, the board shall have the power and authority to acquire any such real property by condemnation proceedings pursuant to Section 11-27-1 et seq., Mississippi Code of 1972, and for such purpose, the right of eminent domain is hereby conferred upon and vested in said board. Provided further, that the local school board is authorized to grant an easement for ingress and egress over sixteenth section land or lieu land in exchange for a similar easement upon adjoining land where the exchange of easements affords substantial benefit to the sixteenth section land; provided, however, the exchange must be based upon values as determined by a competent appraiser, with any differential in value to be adjusted by cash payment. Any easement rights granted over sixteenth section land under such authority shall terminate when the easement ceases to be used for its stated purpose. No sixteenth section or lieu land which is subject to an existing lease shall be burdened by any such easement except by consent of the lessee or unless the school district shall acquire the unexpired leasehold interest affected by the easement;

To charge reasonable fees related to the educational programs of the district, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-7-335;

Subject to rules and regulations of the State Board of Education, to purchase relocatable classrooms for the use of such school district, in the manner prescribed in Section 37-1-13;

Enter into contracts or agreements with other school districts, political subdivisions or governmental entities to carry out one or more of the powers or duties of the school board, or to allow more efficient utilization of limited resources for providing services to the public;

To provide for in-service training for employees of the district;

As part of their duties to prescribe the use of textbooks, to provide that parents and legal guardians shall be responsible for the textbooks and for the compensation to the school district for any books which are not returned to the proper schools upon the withdrawal of their dependent child. If a textbook is lost or not returned by any student who drops out of the public school district, the parent or legal guardian shall also compensate the school district for the fair market value of the textbooks;

To conduct fund-raising activities on behalf of the school district that the local school board, in its discretion, deems appropriate or beneficial to the official or extracurricular programs of the district; provided that:

Any proceeds of the fund-raising activities shall be treated as “activity funds” and shall be accounted for as are other activity funds under this section; and

Fund-raising activities conducted or authorized by the board for the sale of school pictures, the rental of caps and gowns or the sale of graduation invitations for which the school board receives a commission, rebate or fee shall contain a disclosure statement advising that a portion of the proceeds of the sales or rentals shall be contributed to the student activity fund;

To allow individual lessons for music, art and other curriculum-related activities for academic credit or nonacademic credit during school hours and using school equipment and facilities, subject to uniform rules and regulations adopted by the school board;

To charge reasonable fees for participating in an extracurricular activity for academic or nonacademic credit for necessary and required equipment such as safety equipment, band instruments and uniforms;

To conduct or participate in any fund-raising activities on behalf of or in connection with a tax-exempt charitable organization;

To exercise such powers as may be reasonably necessary to carry out the provisions of this section;

To expend funds for the services of nonprofit arts organizations or other such nonprofit organizations who provide performances or other services for the students of the school district;

To expend federal No Child Left Behind Act funds, or any other available funds that are expressly designated and authorized for that use, to pay training, educational expenses, salary incentives and salary supplements to employees of local school districts; except that incentives shall not be considered part of the local supplement as defined in Section 37-151-5(o), nor shall incentives be considered part of the local supplement paid to an individual teacher for the purposes of Section 37-19-7(1). Mississippi Adequate Education Program funds or any other state funds may not be used for salary incentives or salary supplements as provided in this paragraph (mm);

To use any available funds, not appropriated or designated for any other purpose, for reimbursement to the state-licensed employees from both in state and out of state, who enter into a contract for employment in a school district, for the expense of moving when the employment necessitates the relocation of the licensed employee to a different geographical area than that in which the licensed employee resides before entering into the contract. The reimbursement shall not exceed One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) for the documented actual expenses incurred in the course of relocating, including the expense of any professional moving company or persons employed to assist with the move, rented moving vehicles or equipment, mileage in the amount authorized for county and municipal employees under Section 25-3-41 if the licensed employee used his personal vehicle or vehicles for the move, meals and such other expenses associated with the relocation. No licensed employee may be reimbursed for moving expenses under this section on more than one (1) occasion by the same school district. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the actual residence to which the licensed employee relocates to be within the boundaries of the school district that has executed a contract for employment in order for the licensed employee to be eligible for reimbursement for the moving expenses. However, the licensed employee must relocate within the boundaries of the State of Mississippi. Any individual receiving relocation assistance through the Critical Teacher Shortage Act as provided in Section 37-159-5 shall not be eligible to receive additional relocation funds as authorized in this paragraph;

To use any available funds, not appropriated or designated for any other purpose, to reimburse persons who interview for employment as a licensed employee with the district for the mileage and other actual expenses incurred in the course of travel to and from the interview at the rate authorized for county and municipal employees under Section 25-3-41;

Consistent with the report of the Task Force to Conduct a Best Financial Management Practices Review, to improve school district management and use of resources and identify cost savings as established in Section 8 of Chapter 610, Laws of 2002, local school boards are encouraged to conduct independent reviews of the management and efficiency of schools and school districts. Such management and efficiency reviews shall provide state and local officials and the public with the following:

An assessment of a school district’s governance and organizational structure;

An assessment of the school district’s financial and personnel management;

An assessment of revenue levels and sources;

An assessment of facilities utilization, planning and maintenance;

An assessment of food services, transportation and safety/security systems;

An assessment of instructional and administrative technology;

A review of the instructional management and the efficiency and effectiveness of existing instructional programs; and

Recommended methods for increasing efficiency and effectiveness in providing educational services to the public;

To enter into agreements with other local school boards for the establishment of an educational service agency (ESA) to provide for the cooperative needs of the region in which the school district is located, as provided in Section 37-7-345;

To implement a financial literacy program for students in Grades 10 and 11. The board may review the national programs and obtain free literature from various nationally recognized programs. After review of the different programs, the board may certify a program that is most appropriate for the school districts’ needs. If a district implements a financial literacy program, then any student in Grade 10 or 11 may participate in the program. The financial literacy program shall include, but is not limited to, instruction in the same areas of personal business and finance as required under Section 37-1-3(2)(b). The school board may coordinate with volunteer teachers from local community organizations, including, but not limited to, the following: United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development, United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Junior Achievement, bankers and other nonprofit organizations. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as to require school boards to implement a financial literacy program;

To collaborate with the State Board of Education, Community Action Agencies or the Department of Human Services to develop and implement a voluntary program to provide services for a prekindergarten program that addresses the cognitive, social, and emotional needs of four-year-old and three-year-old children. The school board may utilize any source of available revenue to fund the voluntary program. Effective with the 2013-2014 school year, to implement voluntary prekindergarten programs under the Early Learning Collaborative Act of 2013 pursuant to state funds awarded by the State Department of Education on a matching basis;

With respect to any lawful, written obligation of a school district, including, but not limited to, leases (excluding leases of sixteenth section public school trust land), bonds, notes, or other agreement, to agree in writing with the obligee that the Department of Revenue or any state agency, department or commission created under state law may:

Withhold all or any part (as agreed by the school board) of any monies which such local school board is entitled to receive from time to time under any law and which is in the possession of the Department of Revenue, or any state agency, department or commission created under state law; and

Pay the same over to any financial institution, trustee or other obligee, as directed in writing by the school board, to satisfy all or part of such obligation of the school district.

The school board may make such written agreement to withhold and transfer funds irrevocable for the term of the written obligation and may include in the written agreement any other terms and provisions acceptable to the school board. If the school board files a copy of such written agreement with the Department of Revenue, or any state agency, department or commission created under state law then the Department of Revenue or any state agency, department or commission created under state law shall immediately make the withholdings provided in such agreement from the amounts due the local school board and shall continue to pay the same over to such financial institution, trustee or obligee for the term of the agreement.

This paragraph (tt) shall not grant any extra authority to a school board to issue debt in any amount exceeding statutory limitations on assessed value of taxable property within such school district or the statutory limitations on debt maturities, and shall not grant any extra authority to impose, levy or collect a tax which is not otherwise expressly provided for, and shall not be construed to apply to sixteenth section public school trust land;

With respect to any matter or transaction that is competitively bid by a school district, to accept from any bidder as a good-faith deposit or bid bond or bid surety, the same type of good-faith deposit or bid bond or bid surety that may be accepted by the state or any other political subdivision on similar competitively bid matters or transactions. This paragraph (uu) shall not be construed to apply to sixteenth section public school trust land. The school board may authorize the investment of any school district funds in the same kind and manner of investments, including pooled investments, as any other political subdivision, including community hospitals;

To utilize the alternate method for the conveyance or exchange of unused school buildings and/or land, reserving a partial or other undivided interest in the property, as specifically authorized and provided in Section 37-7-485;

To delegate, privatize or otherwise enter into a contract with private entities for the operation of any and all functions of nonacademic school process, procedures and operations including, but not limited to, cafeteria workers, janitorial services, transportation, professional development, achievement and instructional consulting services materials and products, purchasing cooperatives, insurance, business manager services, auditing and accounting services, school safety/risk prevention, data processing and student records, and other staff services; however, the authority under this paragraph does not apply to the leasing, management or operation of sixteenth section lands. Local school districts, working through their regional education service agency, are encouraged to enter into buying consortia with other member districts for the purposes of more efficient use of state resources as described in Section 37-7-345;

To partner with entities, organizations and corporations for the purpose of benefiting the school district;

To borrow funds from the Rural Economic Development Authority for the maintenance of school buildings;

To fund and operate voluntary early childhood education programs, defined as programs for children less than five (5) years of age on or before September 1, and to use any source of revenue for such early childhood education programs. Such programs shall not conflict with the Early Learning Collaborative Act of 2013;

To issue and provide for the use of procurement cards by school board members, superintendents and licensed school personnel consistent with the rules and regulations of the Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration under Section 31-7-9; and

To conduct an annual comprehensive evaluation of the superintendent of schools consistent with the assessment components of paragraph (pp) of this section and the assessment benchmarks established by the Mississippi School Board Association to evaluate the success the superintendent has attained in meeting district goals and objectives, the superintendent’s leadership skill and whether or not the superintendent has established appropriate standards for performance, is monitoring success and is using data for improvement.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-24; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 28, § 2; Laws, 1970, ch. 373, § 1; Laws, 1971, ch. 340, § 1; Laws, 1982, ch. 466, § 1; Laws, 1985, ch. 466, § 1; Laws, 1985, ch. 493, § 3; Laws, 1986, ch. 415, § 3; Laws, 1986, ch. 433, § 18; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 9; Laws, 1987, ch. 307, § 4; Laws, 1989, ch. 585, § 6; Laws, 1990, ch. 535, § 4; Laws, 1993, ch. 549, § 1; Laws, 1993, ch. 562, § 1; Laws, 1995, ch. 515, § 1; Laws, 1995, ch. 344, § 3; Laws, 1995, ch. 426, § 2; Laws, 1996, ch. 437, § 1; Laws, 2000, ch. 370, § 4; Laws, 2000, ch. 559, § 1; Laws, 2004, ch. 408, § 2; Laws, 2004, ch. 485, § 1; Laws, 2004, ch. 563, § 1; Laws, 2005, ch. 394, § 1; Laws, 2005, ch. 540, § 2; Laws, 2006, ch. 390, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 14; Laws, 2007, ch. 416, § 2; Laws, 2009, ch. 317, § 1; reenacted without change, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 7; Laws, 2010, ch. 488, § 5; Laws, 2012, ch. 490, § 1; Laws, 2012, ch. 543, § 2; Laws, 2013, ch. 493, § 3; Laws, 2014, ch. 481, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2014.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 317, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 9, 2009), amended this section. Section 7 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), reenacted this section without change. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 317, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Section 4 of ch. 370, Laws of 2000, effective from and after July 1, 2000 (approved April 14, 2000), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 559, Laws of 2000, effective from and after July 1, 2000 (approved May 20, 2000), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the June 29, 2005 meeting of the Committee.

Section 2 of ch. 408 Laws of 2004, effective from and after June 30, 2004 (approved April 26, 2004), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 485, Laws of 2004, effective from and after July 1, 2004 (approved May 1, 2004), and Section 1 of ch. 563, Laws of 2004 effective from and after July 1, 2004 (approved May 14, 2004), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 563, Laws of 2004, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a typographical error in (qq). “ Section 37-7-345” was substituted for “Section 1 of Senate Bill No. 3016, 2004 Regular Session” at the end of the first sentence.

Section 2 of ch. 540 Laws of 2005, effective from and after passage (approved April 20, 2005), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 394, Laws of 2005, effective July 1, 2005 (approved March 16, 2005), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109, which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the June 29, 2005 meeting of the Committee.

Section 1 of ch. 390, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 13, 2006), amended this section. Section 14 of ch. 417, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 15, 2006), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the May 31, 2006 meeting of the Committee.

Section 2 of ch. 543, Laws of 2012, effective from and after July 1, 2012 (approved May 22, 2012), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 490, Laws of 2012, effective July 1, 2012 (approved April 26, 2012), amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 2 of ch. 543, Laws of 2012, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date supersedes all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1989, ch. 585, § 9, provides as follows:

“SECTION 9. If any section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or any part of this act is declared to be unconstitutional or void, or if for any reason is declared to be invalid or of no effect, the remaining sections, paragraphs, sentences, clauses, phrases or parts thereof shall be in no manner affected thereby but shall remain in full force and effect.”

Laws of 1990, ch. 588, § 7, amended this section effective July 1, 1990, provided that the Legislature by concurrent resolution adopted by the House and Senate in session prior to July 1, 1990 declare that sufficient funds were dedicated and made available for the implementation of Chapter 588. However, such funds were not made available by the Legislature prior to July 1, 1990, and by direction of the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Mississippi the amendatory provisions were not implemented. The text of the amendment can be found in the Advance Sheet Acts of the 1990 Legislative Session published by the Secretary of State’s Office, Jackson, Mississippi.

Laws of 1996, ch. 437, § 2, provides as follows:

“SECTION 2. Any actions taken by school officials prior to the effective date of this act which are specifically authorized herein, are hereby ratified, approved and confirmed.”

Amendment Notes —

The first 2000 amendment (ch. 370) deleted “administrative superintendent ” following “superintendent ” in (g); deleted “provided ” following “contagious diseases ” in (h); deleted “or administrative superintendent ” following “superintendent of schools ” in (o); substituted “certified general appraisers licensed by the State of Mississippi ” for “members of the American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers or the Society of Real Estate Appraisers ” in the eighth sentence of (v)(i), and deleted “(v)(i) ” following “this item ” in the last sentence; deleted “hereinabove ” following “procedure ” in the first sentence of (v)(ii); deleted “or the administrative superintendent ” at the end of (w); in (aa), inserted the present second sentence, in the present fourth sentence, deleted “Provided further, that ” at the beginning, and deleted “provided ” preceding “however ”; in (ff), deleted “The school boards of all school districts ” at the beginning and substituted “to provide ” for “may provide ”; and made other minor changes.

The second 2000 amendment (ch. 559) rewrote (e); deleted “administrative superintendent ” following “superintendent ” in (g); deleted “or administrative superintendent ” following “superintendent of schools ” in (o); substituted “certified general appraisers licensed by the State of Mississippi ” for “members of the American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers or the Society of Real Estate Appraisers ” in the eighth sentence of (v)(i); deleted “or the administrative superintendent ” at the end of (w); inserted the second sentence of (aa); and in (ff), deleted “The school boards of all school districts ” at the beginning, and substituted “to provide ” for “may provide.”

The first 2004 amendment (ch. 408) substituted “(i) ” for“(a) ” and “(ii) ” for “(b) ” in the third-to-last sentence of (s); added (mm) and (nn); and made minor stylistic changes.

The second 2004 amendment (ch. 485), added (mm); and made other minor changes.

The third 2004 amendment (ch. 563) redesignated clauses (a) and (b) as clauses (i) and (ii) in (s); and added (mm) through (ss).

The first 2005 amendment (ch. 394) added the last sentence in (o).

The second 2005 amendment (ch. 540) added (tt) through (vv).

The first 2006 amendment (ch. 390), in (v)(i), substituted “paragraph (v)(i)” for “item (v)” near the beginning of the next-to-last sentence, and substituted “paragraph (v)(i)” for “item (v)(i)” in the last sentence; in (v)(ii), substituted “paragraph (v)(i)” for “item (v)(i)” in the first and second sentences; in (uu), substituted “paragraph (uu)” for “item (uu)” in the second sentence; added (ww) and (xx); and made minor stylistic changes.

The second 2006 amendment (ch. 417), substituted “The State Department of Education” for “The State Auditor” at the beginning of the last sentence in (s); in (v)(i), substituted “as used in paragraph (v)(i)” for “as used in item (v)” in the next-to-last sentence and “as used in this paragraph” for “as used in this item” in the last sentence; deleted the former last two sentences of (ee), which read: “Until June 30, 1994, the school boards may designate two (2) days of the minimum school term, as defined in Section 37-19-1 for employee in-service training for implementation of the new statewide testing system as developed by the State Board of Education. Such designation shall be subject to approval by the State Board of Education pursuant to uniform rules and regulations”; in (uu), substituted “This paragraph (uu)” for “This subsection (uu)” in the next-to-last sentence; added (ww), (xx) and (yy); and made minor stylistic changes.

The 2007 amendment extended the date of the repealer in (qq) from July 1, 2007, until July 1, 2010.

The first 2009 amendment (ch. 317), in (ss), deleted “full-day” preceding “prekindergarten program” in the first sentence, and substituted “any source of available revenue” for “nonstate source special funds, grants, donations or gifts” in the second sentence; added (zz); and made minor stylistic changes.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 345) reenacted this section without change.

The 2010 amendment deleted the undesignated paragraph following (qq), which read: “This paragraph shall repeal on July 1, 2010.”

The first 2012 amendment (ch. 490), substituted “Department of Revenue” for “State Tax Commission” throughout (tt); added (aaa); and made minor stylistic changes throughout.

The second 2012 amendment (ch. 543), substituted “Department of Revenue” for “State Tax Commission” throughout (tt); and added (aaa) and (bbb) and made minor punctuation changes.

The 2013 amendment added the last sentence in (ss); and substituted “2013” for “2007” at the end of (zz).

The 2014 amendment, in (t), substituted “To enter into an energy performance contract, energy services contract” for “To contract, on” and deleted “not to exceed ten (10) years” from the end; deleted “Mississippi Code of 1972” from the end of (vv); and made minor stylistic changes.

Cross References —

Cooperation in carrying out provisions regarding job development and training, see §7-1-365.

Power of the state department of audit to audit the accounts of any school district, including activity funds, see §7-7-211.

Public contracts for energy efficiency services, see §31-7-14.

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

State Department of Education generally, see §37-3-1 et seq.

Provisions providing that all public school districts have a common system of administration after July 1, 1987, see §37-6-1 et seq.

Emergency School Leasing Authority Act of 1986, see §§37-7-351 through37-7-359.

Power of boards of trustees of school districts to require physical examinations of school employees, see §37-11-17.

School district’s discipline plan, and recovery of damages from parent for child’s destructive acts against school property, see §37-11-53.

Code of student conduct, see §37-11-55.

Inclusion of immunization information in pupils’ permanent records, see §37-15-1.

Establishment of graduation standards, see §37-16-7.

Authority of State Board of Education as to school districts declared to be in a state of emergency, see §37-17-13.

Early Learning Collaborative Act of 2013, see §37-21-51.

Establishment and maintenance of drivers’ education courses by school boards, see §37-25-3.

Letting of contracts and making of purchases by boards of trustees for school equipment and supplies, see §37-39-1 et seq.

Pledge of monies from Education Enhancement Fund to pay debt service on debt issued under this section, see §37-61-33.

Conditions for closing schools by boards of trustees, see §37-65-101 et seq.

Mississippi Adequate Education Program created, see §37-151-1 et seq.

Mississippi Critical Teacher Shortage Act, see §37-159-1 et seq.

Prohibition against attendance of school by unvaccinated children, see §41-23-37.

Application of Energy Management Law to property of public school districts, see §57-39-103.

Roads, driveways and parking areas on school district property, and expenditure of funds for their construction and upkeep, see §65-7-74.

Federal Aspects—

No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, P.L. 107-110, 115 Stat. 1425, see 20 USCS §§ 6301 et seq.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Employment.

3. Expenditures.

4. Student rights and discipline.

5. Suit for damages.

6. Miscellaneous.

1. In general.

School district’s acts of constructing and maintaining a theater set, where an independent contractor fell through a hole in a catwalk above a high school stage, fell under the governmental function. Calonkey v. Amory Sch. Dist., 163 So.3d 940, 2014 Miss. App. LEXIS 499 (Miss. Ct. App. 2014), cert. denied, 163 So.3d 301, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 238 (Miss. 2015).

Where plaintiff parent sued defendant school district in state court alleging her child was sexually assaulted at school and obtained a judgment under the Mississippi Tort Claims Act, her later claims in federal court were properly held as barred due to res judicata; while school districts’ sources of funding under Miss. Code Ann. §§37-45-21,37-47-1 et seq.,37-57-1,37-59-3, and37-151-7 were equally divided between local school districts and the state under Miss. Code Ann. §§11-46-7,11-46-16(2), and §11-46-17(2), any judgment against the school district would be paid through the Tort Claims Fund and excess liability insurance, and thus, the school district was not considered an arm of the state entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity. Black v. N. Panola Sch. Dist., 461 F.3d 584, 2006 U.S. App. LEXIS 21259 (5th Cir. Miss. 2006).

In the construction and erection of elementary and junior high schools and the preparation of school grounds, trustees of the city municipal separate school district were exercising power conferred upon them by the Constitution and the legislature, and were not agents of the city. Harrell v. Jackson, 229 Miss. 815, 92 So. 2d 240, 1957 Miss. LEXIS 329 (Miss. 1957).

2. Employment.

A school board has the authority to employ and fix the duties and compensation of non-instructional personnel. Yarbrough v. Camphor, 645 So. 2d 867, 1994 Miss. LEXIS 450 (Miss. 1994).

Where the minutes showed that the board of trustees of a school district at a meeting for the purpose of choosing teachers for the following school term selected petitioner, along with others, as teachers, and that the board would require teachers without degrees to take summer work towards them, but did not indicate that this provision was a condition precedent or subsequent to the employment contract of the teachers so elected, failure of petitioner to attend summer school did not automatically invalidate her contract, and the board of trustees could only remove her under the provisions of § 26, chapter 20, Laws of 1953, extraordinary session [Miss. Code Ann. §37-9-59]. Cheatham v. Smith, 229 Miss. 803, 92 So. 2d 203, 1957 Miss. LEXIS 328 (Miss. 1957).

3. Expenditures.

A school board’s posting of a performance bond for the benefit of a private construction company in connection with its job training program was an illegal expenditure; by posting a performance bond as guarantor for a private company, the school board far exceeded its statutory authority to conduct vocational education training, and therefore personal liability for the illegal expenditure would be imposed on board members. Smith v. Dorsey, 599 So. 2d 529, 1991 Miss. LEXIS 603 (Miss. 1991).

A school board’s expenditures of $21,548.92 to pay campaign workers to promote passage of a bond referendum for new school buildings and $945.03 for lunch for poll workers on election day constituted illegal expenditures since a school district is without explicit or implicit statutory authority to expend taxpayer funds in a promotional effort for the passage of a bond referendum; neither §§37-59-1 et seq., which are devoted to school bonds and obligations, nor subsection (d) of this section, which empowers local school districts to construct schools, authorize a school board to spend public funds to promote passage of a bond issue, and therefore board members who voted affirmatively for the advertising budget from which the expenditures were made would be personally liable for the illegal expenditures. Smith v. Dorsey, 599 So. 2d 529, 1991 Miss. LEXIS 603 (Miss. 1991).

4. Student rights and discipline.

Where disciplinary proceedings were commenced against a student for violating his school’s policy that prohibited students from carrying weapons, the school board did not err in delegating authority to the superintendent to determine whether the object was a knife under school policy and state law. Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301(e) authorized the school board to delegate authority to the superintendent to make a determination as to whether the seized instrument was a weapon, so long as the school board made the final determination regarding discipline. Hinds County Sch. Dist. Bd. v. R.B., 10 So.3d 387, 2008 Miss. LEXIS 606 (Miss. 2008).

School district’s alcohol policy was not facially overbroad as applied to conduct of student who admitted consuming alcohol before entering school property to attend school athletic function; policy validly applied to student’s conduct, district was constitutionally permitted to proscribe consumption of alcohol within limits, and policy was susceptible to narrowing interpretation. Board of Trustees v. T.H. by & Through T.H. (In the Interest of T.H.), 681 So. 2d 110, 1996 Miss. LEXIS 492 (Miss. 1996).

High school principal’s deletion from school-sponsored student newspaper of pages containing articles he reasonably considered objectionable did not violate student’s First Amendment rights. Hazelwood School Dist. v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260, 108 S. Ct. 562, 98 L. Ed. 2d 592, 1988 U.S. LEXIS 310 (U.S. 1988).

A denial of a list of witnesses does not always amount to a prejudicial denial of due process, particularly where student witnesses in a school disciplinary proceeding are involved, since a school board has not been given the power of subpoena. However, school boards should be especially sensitive to the right of students to know the complete nature of the charges, especially where charges of misconduct are denied and proof is based solely on testimony of other students. Although confrontation may not be an absolute necessity – or even advisable – in every case, written statements should ordinarily be provided. Findings of fact should be made, especially where there are multiple allegations. School boards should take note that although courts should not become involved in running schools, expulsion and suspension are severe sanctions requiring solemn attention to a pupil’s rights. Jones v. Board of Trustees, 524 So. 2d 968, 1988 Miss. LEXIS 189 (Miss. 1988).

A high school sophomore who, along with a schoolmate, drank 2 or 3 sips of beer at her home before leaving for school, was denied procedural due process when, despite there being no school board rule prohibiting the drinking of beer by students at home, the school board took away all her school credits for the semester as punishment for drinking the beer, and, again, where procedures for a de novo hearing before the school board were ignored. Warren County Bd. of Education v. Wilkinson, 500 So. 2d 455, 1986 Miss. LEXIS 2789 (Miss. 1986).

As matter of state substantive due process, school board’s disciplinary rule or scheme is constitutionally enforceable where, fairly viewed, it furthers substantial legitimate interest of school district; authority vested in school boards consistent with constitutional limitation includes substantial discretion with respect to administration of punishment to student who violates school rule. Clinton Municipal Separate School Dist. v. Byrd, 477 So. 2d 237, 1985 Miss. LEXIS 2204 (Miss. 1985).

A rule promulgated by a school principal, pursuant to authority delegated to the principal by the board of trustees to decide whether “a student’s hair is too long,” that male students should not wear their hair longer than two inches above the eyebrows, had a rational basis to prevent disruption of the atmosphere of learning and was not an improper invasion of family privacy. Shows v. Freeman, 230 So. 2d 63, 1969 Miss. LEXIS 1262 (Miss. 1969).

5. Suit for damages.

School district was not entitled to discretionary immunity from liability for injuries caused by a protruding conduit in the district’s parking lot because Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301(d) imposed a ministerial duty on the district to repair the hazard. Natchez-Adams Sch. Dist. v. Bruce, 168 So.3d 1181, 2015 Miss. App. LEXIS 231 (Miss. Ct. App.), cert. denied, 166 So.3d 38, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 334 (Miss. 2015).

School district was not entitled to summary judgment finding the district immune from liability for a student’s injury, under Miss. Code Ann. §11-46-9(1)(d), because the district had a ministerial duty under Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301(d) to ensure a divider which fell and struck the student was properly replaced and secured. K.N. v. Moss Point Sch. Dist., 167 So.3d 1280, 2014 Miss. App. LEXIS 659 (Miss. Ct. App. 2014), cert. denied, 168 So.3d 962, 2015 Miss. LEXIS 359 (Miss. 2015).

A school district was expressly and impliedly, both by statute and case law, authorized to file and pursue a claim for damages resulting from the alleged faulty construction of a school building against the contractor, the architect, the bonding company, the subcontractors, and the furnishers of building materials, under §11-45-11, since the district had responsibility for the erection, repairing and equipping of school facilities pursuant to §37-7-619 [repealed], and since §7-5-1 did not require that the action be brought by the Attorney General, in that the subject matter of the allegations was an isolated contract and its alleged breach resulting in a defective school roof, which was hardly a matter of state-wide interest. Grenada Municipal Separate School Dist. v. Jesco, Inc., 449 So. 2d 226, 1984 Miss. LEXIS 1707 (Miss. 1984).

A municipal separate school district may bring suit for alleged damages resulting from the alleged faulty construction of a district’s school building against the contractor, the architect, the bonding company, the sub-contractors, and the furnishers of building materials. Grenada Municipal Separate School Dist. v. Jesco, Inc., 449 So. 2d 226, 1984 Miss. LEXIS 1707 (Miss. 1984).

6. Miscellaneous.

Because a decedent was not invited to use a school district bus parking lot, he was a trespasser, and when he left the lot to attempt to cross a public road, he relinquished that status. Thus, the district owed the decedent no duty under Miss. Code Ann. §§37-9-69 and37-7-301 when he stepped off district property and was struck by an oncoming motorist while crossing the road. Gammel v. Tate County Sch. Dist., 995 So. 2d 853, 2008 Miss. App. LEXIS 691 (Miss. Ct. App. 2008).

Youth court had jurisdiction to order reenrollment of student suspended for violation of school district’s alcohol policy. Board of Trustees v. T.H. by & Through T.H. (In the Interest of T.H.), 681 So. 2d 110, 1996 Miss. LEXIS 492 (Miss. 1996).

A public school board had the authority to consolidate schools within its district and to reassign students en masse; the plan was not a “reorganization of the school district” within the meaning of §37-7-105. Section37-7-105 and its petition, publication and referendum procedures do not apply to everything the school board may wish to abolish, alter or reorganize. The statute applies only where the school board “abolishes, alters or reorganizes a school district.” The phrase “school district” imports the geographic boundaries of the district and perhaps the corporate organization or structure thereof. The school board’s plan did not alter the existing structure of the school district, which remained a county-wide district, and did not reorganize corporate structure, and therefore §§37-7-103 and 37-7-105 did not apply. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

Notice procedure set forth in Leasing Act [Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301] is constitutionally adequate, since it is reasonably calculated, under all circumstances, to apprise interested parties of pendency of action and afford them opportunity to present objections. Cox v. Jackson Municipal Separate School Dist., 503 So. 2d 265, 1987 Miss. LEXIS 2355 (Miss. 1987).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

School board is not authorized to enter into an owner financed purchase agreement for the purchase of land. Bailey, Jan. 7, 1992, A.G. Op. #91-0959.

School board attorney may be compensated for all legal services contracted for and performed including legal services in conjunction with bond issues, subject to statutory fee limitations. King, August 5, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0553.

Local public school districts have necessary implied authority to purchase contracts for liability insurance if they determine such is in best interest of districts. Watkins, Sept. 10, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0731.

School board could not purchase utility vehicle to be operated by employee of State Forestry Commission in performance of forestry services for school district. Badon, Oct. 14, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0788.

School board may, pursuant to this section, set reasonable regulations for governance of schools including permitting of solicitation, as in case of various music supply companies presenting their products to new band members; this solicitation must be in connection with school-sponsored program, and parents or children who so request should be allowed to view products of any business which provides product, if only that business is given access to school; to permit solicitation by businesses for products unrelated to school-sponsored course or event may be violation of Constitution and may impair efficient operation of school. Young, Feb. 3, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0070.

Statute allows school district to employ counsel as it deems necessary to represent it in any action at law; however, it does not authorize payment of fees for attorney employed by and representing private group in action to which district is not party; such would be violation of Article 4, Section 66 of Mississippi Constitution of 1890 Andrews Oct. 29, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0777.

In regard to personnel matters, Sections 37-9-3, 37-7-301(w), 37-9-15, 37-9-17, 37-9-105 and 37-9-59, with the exception of the step-aside provisions of 37-9-17, require the recommendation of the superintendent before the board may act upon the employment of non-instructional employees and certificated employees. Hand, February 1, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0008.

Travel expenses of school board members are governed by subsection (o) of this section and §37-6-13 and a school board may approve travel expenses of their membership without the superintendent’s recommendation. Hand, February 1, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0008.

Travel expenses of non-school board personnel requires the approval of the school board pursuant to Section 37-9-14(7) and subsection (o) of this section. Hand, February 1, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0008.

Subsection (w) of this section authorizes the school board to employ registered lobbyists to represent the board’s interest before the Mississippi Legislature and its committees if the superintendent or administrative superintendent recommends it, and the school board finds that such action is necessary to the carrying out of a lawful school board function. Barrett, July 27, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0493.

Subsection (dd) of this section for school districts and Section 21-17-5, the home rule authority for municipalities, provide specific authority for the school district and the city to enter into the Interlocal Agreement for the provision of printing services by the school district to the city, provided adequate consideration is received in return. Cochran, December 20, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0730.

Subsection (aa) of this section includes the power to lease property such as a parking lot for use by an existing school building upon the requisite findings that the property is necessary and desirable in connection with the operation of the school building. Caves, November 1, 1996, A.G. Op. #96-0709.

A county board of supervisors does not have the power to lease real property from a school district for the purpose of subsequently subleasing the property to citizens of the county to be used as a community recreational facility. Lamar, July 18, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0429.

A public school district is authorized to enter into a contract for Medicaid reimbursement billing services, and such contract may provide for compensation at a rate determined by the district board to be reasonable and commensurate with the services provided. Turner, July 25, 1997, A.G. Op. #97-0430.

A school board may contract with an investment advisor to provide services and pay a fixed, percentage fee based upon the assets managed by the advisor so long as the board finds that the fee is reasonable and commensurate with the services provided. Turner, August 28, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0475.

A school district and a city may enter into an interlocal agreement for the provision of traffic control, although the duty to enforce traffic regulations lies with the police department and it can not withhold its services solely because of the lack of such an agreement. Noble, January 15, 1999, A.G. Op. #98-0714.

A school district is authorized to purchase property or exercise the right of eminent domain. Bryant, January 15, 1999, A.G. Op. #98-0725.

If property is subject to a present lease with the term expiring in the future, the school district may acquire the property subject to the lease. Bryant, January 15, 1999, A.G. Op. #98-0725.

Assuming that a drug testing program meets the constitutional standards established in Vernonia School Dist. 47J v. Acton, 115 S. Ct. 2386 (1995), and there are factual findings on the board minutes in accord with these standards, then the school board has the authority to pay for the cost of such a program out of maintenance funds. Wallace, January 29, 1999, A.G. Op. #98-0803.

If a mandatory school uniform rule furthers a substantial, legitimate interest of the school district, as determined by the school board, then it is within the discretion of a school board, with proper notice, to prescribe the discipline to be administered for the violation of the rule or regulation; assuming that the child is financially able to purchase the required uniform, a school district may administer, subject to procedural due process, appropriate disciplinary measures for refusal to comply with the school rule, including suspension or expulsion; however, long term out-of-school suspension or expulsion for violation of a school uniform policy is not permitted. Smith, June 11, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0274.

At athletic and student recognition banquets, meals may be provided by the school board for students, parents, and employees of the district. Bryant, July 30, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0380.

Both the GECIC and the GCCF are organizations to which a school board may pay dues, and once dues are paid into a private organization, the funds are no longer public funds and are no longer restricted by the laws governing state agencies’ investments and expenditures. Dukes, August 20, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0397.

A school board may, with proper notice, adopt a rule wherein further property belonging to the school may be withheld from a student who has lost, destroyed, or damaged school property entrusted to him or her until such time as the student or parents reimburse the school for the property. Chaney, Jr., Jan. 28, 2000, A.G. Op. #99-0723.

Subsection (s) discusses two separate issues related to activity funds; the first issue is the “necessary expenses or travel costs . . . incurred by students and their chaperons,” and the second issue is “any commodities, equipment . . . which may become the personal property of individuals.” Bryant, May 19, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0186.

The term “individuals,” as used in subsection (s), refers to the students of the local school district. Bryant, May 19, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0186.

Subsection (aa) allows a school board to acquire real property, so long as no amount is paid for interest or financing of the purchase. Mitchell, June 9, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0266.

Organizations may be permitted to utilize school facilities without charge for rent or utilities, as long as the school board makes a finding that the organization’s use of the property is beneficial to the official or extracurricular programs of the school. Compretta, July 28, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0425.

A school board is authorized to expend funds for the purpose of renovating and adding on to the office of the superintendent of education if such is reasonably necessary for the performance of duties. Gex, Oct. 6, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0555.

The school board of a county school district does not have authority to employ or re-employ a non-instructional employee if the superintendent does not recommend the employee to the board. Boyles, Mar. 2, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0116.

A school board can adopt a policy which addresses non-employees, as long as the policy is consistent with all laws and State Board of Education regulations, and a school district may, in the exercise of its authority to provide a safe and secure environment for its students, prohibit or otherwise restrict a convicted felon from working with students on campus. Tutor, Mar. 20, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0688.

A school district may contract with noninstructional and noncertified employees in accordance with the fluctuating workweek scheme as defined by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Adams, Sept. 28, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0601.

A school board may set the salary for any superintendent, principal, or licensed/certificated employee at the amount the board deems appropriate. Mayfield, July 19, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0291.

Allowing independent contractors to establish concession areas on school property during extracurricular events constitutes the granting of a license for which it would require the approval of the school board and the assessment of a reasonable fee, which could be in the form of a negotiated percentage of all sales of food and beverages at the events. Adams, Sept. 27, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0508.

Even if there was an error in crediting experience at the time a school district hired an employee, the district and the employee agreed upon an amount for salary and the employee was paid that salary and is not due any back pay. Logan, Nov. 8, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0617.

The school board must be allowed to reject or approve all claims before pay certificates are issued by the superintendent of education; however, pay certificates may be issued by the superintendent without prior approval of the school board on the payment of specific claims in accordance with the exceptions set out in subsection 37-9-14(7). Henderson, Dec. 6, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0658.

Where a school district and long-term substitute teacher agreed upon a specific daily amount of compensation and she was paid that amount, even if this was an error in that other employees serving in the same position received a higher daily pay rate, she was not due any back pay under the circumstances. Varas, Dec. 13, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0706.

So long as a school district’s employees are not already contracted and paid to participate in training sessions and have not performed the service of attending the sessions, Article 4, Section 96 of the Mississippi Constitution does not prohibit the district from contracting with these employees to attend the sessions. Adams, Jan. 10, 2003, A.G. Op. #02-0717.

If a graduation policy furthers a substantial, legitimate interest of the school district, as determined by the school board, then it is within the authority of the school board to adopt such graduation policy. Adams, June 13, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0257.

Considering the absence of any state law to the contrary, a school board has the inherent authority to establish its own policy regarding the setting and amending of its agenda as well as the adoption of rules of parliamentary procedure pursuant to its authority under this section. Adams, June 20, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0282.

A school board is authorized to pay for additions to the superintendent’s office building which is owned by the county if the county approves the modifications to and construction upon its property. Spears, July 18, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0319.

Whether a meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus Political and Educational Leadership Institute is educational is a factual question which cannot be answered by way of an Attorney General’s opinion; however, if the school board makes a determination, consistent with fact and subject to review by the State Auditor or a court of competent jurisdiction, that it is an educational meeting then it may approve the expenditure of funds for the attendance of members, as long as the requirements of Section 37-6-13 and subsection (o) of this section have been met. Swanson, July 7, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0330.

No statutory authority can be found which would permit school employees to search a student vehicle that is parked on a city street, to designate parking on a city street or to control traffic flow of a city street; however, a school district and a city may enter into an interlocal agreement for the provision of traffic control, and city and county law enforcement agencies are authorized to contract with school districts for the provision of police protection. Taylor, July 7, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0334.

Although school districts are empowered to construct school buildings and related facilities and to construct necessary utility services, no authority can be found for a district to provide services to a private entity. Harrell, Jan. 6, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0628.

Use of public school buildings pursuant to subsection (k) of this section should not interfere with the school’s routine or extra-curricular use of the building. Adams, Jan. 30, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0704.

A school district may require compensation for use of a school facility. Adams, Jan. 30, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0704.

While a school has the authority to impose disciplinary punishment against a student who damages school property (or to seek reimbursement from the student’s parents), a school should not act in a manner that imposes an academic punishment on the student. Adams, Jan. 23, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0553.

Subject to any lawfully adopted policies or preexisting contractual obligations, a school board in its discretion may reassign a nonlicensed employee to a position with lesser duties and responsibilities and may also reduce the salary of the employee. Smith, Mar. 19, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0114.

A school district building use policy must be applied equally to all parties requesting use of the school gymnasium or any other school building; to do otherwise, may have a discriminatory effect on other individuals or groups desiring to use school facilities. Thus, the Parent Teacher Association must abide by the district policy including the provision that requires insurance to be obtained. Jones, Apr. 30, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0167.

Dues payments by public school districts to associations such as the Mississippi School Superintendents Association, or Mississippi School Board Associations may be paid from local funds. Chaney, June 14, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0228.

Subsection (gg) of this section authorizes a school board to receive a commission, rebate or fee from a school photographer pursuant to a contract with a photographer for the sale of school pictures as long as a disclosure statement advising that a portion of the proceeds of the sales shall be contributed to the student activity fund is given to students and their parents. Johnson, June 18, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0236.

There is no specific statutory authority for a school board to dismiss non-licensed employees on its own initiative. That authority has been granted specifically to the superintendent in §37-9-14 (2)(y). Rhodes, Nov. 4, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0509.

The purchase of fixtures and equipment constituting fixtures as part of the acquisition of a tract of land and existing truck terminal building shop for use as a school district’s bus terminal can be acquired pursuant to subsection (aa) of this section without regard to general bid procedures. Nettles, Nov. 15, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0490.

A leadership book for teacher use and cell phone service for use by coaches and/or teachers when traveling on school functions may be paid with activity funds if the school board deems the expenses beneficial to the official or extracurricular programs of the district. No authority can be found for expenditure of activity funds for membership dues for a principal to belong to a school-related organization. Compton, July 22, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0283.

A county school district board has the authority to accept a donation of funds from a non-profit organization for the purpose of constructing an indoor batting facility. Foster, July 29, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0373.

No statutory provisions are known, other than the conflict of interest laws, that would prevent a school board from purchasing real property from the regular school board attorney, as long as the purchase is made in accordance with Section 37-7-301. Johnson, Oct. 7, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0473.

A school board may require a Health Certificate to be obtained by all new employees as a condition to employment. Mayfield, Dec. 9, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0572.

A school board would have the authority to pay for the cost of a portrait to be placed at a high school and the cost of having a mural painted on a wall at the school to honor former students upon making a finding that the expenditures are reasonable and necessary and for the support and operation of its schools and the educational benefit of its students and funds are available. Compton, Apr. 28, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0144.

There is no authority which grants special privileges to a school district employee who also serves as a public official. Mayfield, Apr. 28, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0121.

A school board has authority to lease property from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; this response does not change for leasing unimproved real property. Walker, July 11, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0226.

For purposes of application of the separation of powers doctrine, a local school board is an officer exercising powers in the executive branch of government. Bounds, July 27, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0276.

A school district has the authority to have a student tested for suspicion of using drugs without first securing the parent’s or guardian’s permission. Montgomery, Aug. 20, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0513.

Each school district in adopting board regulations pertaining to the use of school facilities for the purpose of conducting public meetings must take into consideration federal constitutional standards as well as current federal statutes. Roach, Aug. 25, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0362.

A school board may adopt a policy prohibiting the use of the name of the school district for student functions located off campus where all students are not invited. Roach, Aug. 25, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0362.

The school board has authority to impose disciplinary action for conduct committed at a school-related activity or event or for conduct occurring on property other than school property or at a school-related event. Roach, Aug. 25, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0362.

A local school board is authorized to acquire, in its own name by purchase, real property consisting of a building located thereon to be used for administrative purposes by the superintendent and central office staff as well as providing additional meeting rooms for school board meetings, provided the requirements of Section 37-7-301(aa) are met. Maples, Sept. 29, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0469.

A school board has authority to authorize the payment of Hepatitis B vaccines for all school district employees who may be exposed to blood borne pathogens. Smith, Oct. 20, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0522.

Lease of school facilities to a church for worship services by the Board of Trustees is permissible under Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301, so long as the use is allowed under a reasonable and nondiscriminatory policy prescribed by the Board and applied in a reasonable and nondiscriminatory manner, and so long as the church complies with the Board’s Building Use Policy. Henderson, February 2, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00017, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 7.

A school board may employ legal counsel other than the Board Attorney only by a majority vote of a quorum present in a properly noticed and open meeting of the board, and must officially hire an attorney before sharing any confidential personnel records. Reasons for non-renewal of a superintendent’s contract and any settlement offers must be approved and recorded in the minutes at an official meeting of the board. All policies, actions, and decisions of the school board must be reasonable and necessary to meet the educational needs of the district’s children. Foreman, March 30, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00119, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 71.

Purchase of athletic equipment and travel expenses of students and chaperones for school-related extracurricular clubs and teams are allowable expenditures of activity funds derived from athletic events. If the local school board deems the expenses beneficial to the extracurricular programs and students of the district, it may authorize the expenditures pursuant to Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-301(s). Caudill, March 30, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00122, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 76.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Use of public school premises for religious purposes during nonschool time. 79 A.L.R.2d 1148.

Physical or mental illness as basis of dismissal of students from school, college, or university. 17 A.L.R.4th 519.

Validity, construction, and effect of provision releasing school from liability for injuries to students caused by interscholastic and other extracurricular activities. 85 A.L.R.4th 344.

Application of requirement that newspaper be locally published for official notice publication. 85 A.L.R.4th 581.

Validity of regulation by public-school authorities as to clothes or personal appearance of pupils. 58 A.L.R.5th 1.

Validity and construction of public school regulation of student distribution of religious documents at school. 136 A.L.R. Fed. 551.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 25 et seq.

16A Am. Jur. Legal Forms 2d (Rev), Schools § 229:77 (resolution adopting policies, rules and regulations for district).

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 287-289, 291, 292 et seq.

Law Reviews.

Dill, Education law abstract: a survey of prominent issues in Mississippi’s public schools. 13 Miss. C. L. Rev. 337 (Spring, 1993).

1984 Mississippi Supreme Court Review – Corporate, Contract and Commercial Law. 55 Miss L. J. 65, March, 1985.

1985 Mississippi Supreme Court Review – Administrative Law. 55 Miss. L. J. 735, December 1985.

Aids in the Classroom. 58 Miss. L. J. 349, Fall 1988.

Practice References.

Education Law (Matthew Bender).

IDEA - A Handy Desk Reference to the Law, Regulations and Educators (LexisNexis Publishing Solutions Government).

§ 37-7-301.1. Local school districts granted home rule.

The school board of a school district may adopt any orders, resolutions or ordinances with respect to school district affairs, property and finances which are not inconsistent with the Mississippi Constitution of 1890, the Mississippi Code of 1972, or any other statute or law of the State of Mississippi. Except as otherwise provided in this section, the powers granted to the school boards in this section are complete without the existence of or reference to any specific authority granted in any other statute or law of the State of Mississippi. Unless such actions are specifically authorized by another statute or law of the State of Mississippi, this section shall not authorize a school board to: (a) levy taxes of any kind or increase the levy of any authorized tax; (b) issue bonds of any kind; or (c) enter into collective bargaining agreements.

HISTORY: Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 504, § 5; reenacted without change, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 8, eff from and after June 30, 2009.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 2006, ch. 417, § 1, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 15, 2006), contained identical language to this section and also was directed to be codified as Section 37-7-301.1. The version contained in Laws of 2006, ch. 504, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 28, 2006), is printed here because it is the latest expression of legislative intent, as determined by the Co-counsel of the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation.

Laws of 2006, ch. 504, § 1(1), codified as §37-161-1(1), provides as follows:

“SECTION 1. (1) This act shall be known and may be referred to as the ‘Mississippi Education Reform Act of 2006.’ ”

Section 19 of Chapter 504, Laws of 2006, provided for the repeal of this section, effective June 30, 2009. Section 1 of Chapter 345, Laws of 2009, amended Section 19 of Chapter 504, Laws of 2006, to remove the repealer for this section.

Amendment Notes —

The 2009 amendment reenacted this section without change.

Cross References —

Mississippi Education Reform Act of 2006, see §37-161-1 et seq.

§ 37-7-302. Borrowing of funds for removal of asbestos.

The board of trustees of any school district shall be authorized to borrow such funds as may be reasonable and necessary from the federal government, the State of Mississippi or any political subdivision or entity thereof, or any other governmental agency, from any individual, partnership, nonprofit corporation or private for-profit corporation, to aid such school districts in asbestos removal, to be repaid out of any non-minimum program funds; provided, however, that the grant of authority shall in no way be construed to require said boards of trustees to remove asbestos material or substances from any facilities under their control, nor shall there be any liability to said school districts or boards for the failure to so remove such asbestos materials. All indebtedness incurred under the provisions of this section shall be evidenced by the negotiable notes or certificates of indebtedness of the school district on whose behalf the money is borrowed. Said notes or certificates of indebtedness of the school district on whose behalf the money is borrowed shall be signed by the president of the school board and superintendent of schools of such school district. Such notes or certificates of indebtedness shall not bear a greater overall maximum interest rate to maturity than the rates now or hereafter authorized under the provisions of Section 19-9-19. No such notes or certificates of indebtedness shall be issued and sold for less than par and accrued interest. All notes or certificates of indebtedness shall mature in approximately equal installments of principal and interest over a period not to exceed twenty (20) years from the dates of the issuance thereof. Principal and interest shall be payable in such manner as may be determined by the school board. Such notes or certificates of indebtedness shall be issued in such form and in such denominations as may be determined by the school board and same may be made payable at the office of any bank or trust company selected by the school board and, in such case, funds for the payment of principal and interest due thereon shall be provided in the same manner provided by law for the payment of the principal and interest due on bonds issued by the taxing districts of this state.

HISTORY: Laws, 1989, ch. 585, § 7, effective April 25, 1989 (became law without the Governor’s signature).

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1989, ch. 585, § 9, provides as follows:

“SECTION 9. If any section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or any part of this act is declared to be unconstitutional or void, or if for any reason is declared to be invalid or of no effect, the remaining sections, paragraphs, sentences, clauses, phrases or parts thereof shall be in no manner affected thereby but shall remain in full force and effect.”

Cross References —

Pledge of monies from Education Enhancement Fund to pay debt service on debt issued under this section, see §37-61-33.

Accreditation and certification of persons involved in identifying, evaluating and abating the hazard of asbestos-containing material in public and private elementary and secondary school buildings, see §37-138-1 et seq.

§ 37-7-303. Obtaining of insurance on school property; workers’ compensation insurance.

  1. The school board of any school district may insure motor vehicles for any hazard that the board may choose, and shall insure the school buildings, equipment and other school property of the district against any and all hazards that the board may deem necessary to provide insurance against. In addition, the local school board of any school district shall purchase and maintain business property insurance and business personal property insurance on all school district-owned buildings and/or contents as required by federal law and regulations of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as is necessary for receiving public assistance or reimbursement for repair, reconstruction, replacement or other damage to those buildings and/or contents caused by the Hurricane Katrina Disaster of 2005 or subsequent disasters. The school district is authorized to expend funds from any available source for the purpose of obtaining and maintaining that property insurance. The school district is authorized to enter into agreements with the Department of Finance and Administration, other local school districts, community/junior college districts, state institutions of higher learning, community hospitals and/or other state agencies to pool their liabilities to participate in a group business property and/or business personal property insurance program, subject to uniform rules and regulations as may be adopted by the Department of Finance and Administration. Such school board shall be authorized to contract for such insurance for a term of not exceeding five (5) years and to obligate the district for the payment of the premiums thereon. When necessary, the school board is authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to borrow money payable in annual installments for a period of not exceeding five (5) years at a rate of interest not exceeding eight percent (8%) per annum to provide funds to pay such insurance premiums. The money so borrowed and the interest thereon shall be payable from any school funds of the district other than minimum education program funds. The school boards of school districts are further authorized and empowered, in all cases where same may be necessary, to bring and maintain suits and other actions in any court of competent jurisdiction for the purpose of collecting the proceeds of insurance policies issued upon the property of such school district.
  2. Two (2) or more school districts, together with other educational entities or agencies, may agree to pool their liabilities to participate in a group workers’ compensation program. The governing authorities of any school board or other educational entity or agency may authorize the organization and operation of, or the participation in such a group self-insurance program with other school boards and educational entities or agencies, subject to the requirements of Section 71-3-5. The Workers’ Compensation Commission shall approve such group self-insurance programs subject to uniform rules and regulations as may be adopted by the commission applicable to all groups.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-26; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 6; Laws, 1960, ch. 370; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 10; Laws, 1993, ch. 562, § 2; Laws, 2005, 5th Ex Sess, ch. 24, § 4, eff from and after passage (approved Oct. 24, 2005).

Amendment Notes —

The 2005 amendment, 5th Ex Sess, ch. 24, rewrote (1).

Cross References —

Placing of insurance on county property by county board of supervisors, see §19-7-7.

Liability insurance to cover official actions of public school boards of education, see §37-7-319.

Giving of rewards in cases of destruction of state-supported school buildings, see §83-1-35.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Individual school district acting alone which desires to participate in liability pool is not required to advertise for bids; liability coverage provided by Mississippi Public Entity Workers’ Compensation pool is not subject to provisions of 37-7-303(2). Wallace, Oct. 2, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0749.

A school district has the authority to participate in the Mississippi Municipal Workers’ Compensation Group, a liability pool created for participation by various political subdivisions, as long as it was created pursuant to Section 71-3-5. Seal, Aug. 29, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0415.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 99.

§ 37-7-304. Repealed.

Repealed by its own terms by Laws, 1992, ch. 491 § 15, eff from and after October 1, 1993.

[Laws, 1973, ch. 477, § 1; Repealed, Laws, 1984, ch. 495, § 36, and Laws, 1984, 1st Ex Sess, ch. 8, § 3; Laws, 1985, ch. 474, § 41; Laws, 1986, ch. 438, § 13; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 11; Laws, 1987, ch. 483, § 18; Laws, 1988, ch. 442, § 15; Laws, 1989, ch. 537, § 14; Laws, 1990, ch. 518, § 15; Laws, 1991, ch. 618, § 14; Laws, 1992, ch. 491 § 15]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-304 related to obtaining of liability insurance on vehicles.

§ 37-7-305. Leasing of lands for minerals.

The school board of any school district is hereby authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to lease lands owned by the school district, or any land the title to which is in the school board of the district in their trust capacity, for oil, gas and mineral exploration and development upon such terms and conditions and for such considerations as the school board, in its discretion, shall deem proper and advisable. However, no oil, gas or mineral lease shall be for a primary term of more than ten (10) years and said lease or leases shall provide for annual rentals of not less than One Dollar ($1.00) per acre and shall provide for royalties of not less than three-sixteenths (3/16ths) of all oil, gas and other minerals produced, including sulphur. Every such lease so executed shall empower the lessee to enter upon the premises leased and to explore and develop such premises for oil or gas, or either, or for such other minerals as may be included in the terms of said lease, and to do all things necessary or expedient for the production or preservation of any such products. All rentals, royalties or other revenue payable under any lease executed under the provisions of this section shall be paid to and collected by the school board of the school district and shall be deposited in the school district fund and used and expended in the same manner and subject to the same restrictions as provided by law in the case of other money on deposit in such fund. All leases executed pursuant to this section shall inure to the benefit of the lessee named therein and his heirs or assigns and in case the lessee be a corporation, to such lessee and its assigns. Said leases shall specifically provide that no damages shall be permitted to existing school buildings or facilities thereto.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-27; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 7; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 12, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

Oil, gas and mineral leases of lands belonging to agricultural high schools, see §37-27-29.

Oil, gas and mineral leases of land belonging to junior colleges, see §37-29-73.

Agreements for co-operative development and operation of certain common accumulations of oil and gas under leases by public officers, see §53-3-51.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

This section controlled with regard to a lease of oil, gas and mineral rights in nonsixteenth section lands owned by a school district; however, the school board was charged with securing fair market value in the bonus paid and rental charged for the lease in order to avoid a donation of state lands in violation of Article 4, Section 95, Mississippi Constitution of 1890. Caves, March 12, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0110.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools §§ 110 et seq.

CJS.

78A C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 761, 763.

§ 37-7-306. Training and education requirements.

  1. Every school board member selected after July 1, 2002, shall have a high school diploma or its equivalent.
  2. Every school board member selected after July 1, 1993, shall be required to complete a basic course of training and education for local school board members, in order for board members to carry out their duties more effectively and be exposed to new ideas involving school restructuring. Such basic course of training shall be conducted by the Mississippi School Boards Association. Upon completion of the basic course of training, the Mississippi School Boards Association shall file a certificate of completion for the school board member with the office of the local school board. In the event that a board member fails to complete such training within six (6) months of his selection, such board member shall no longer be qualified to serve and shall be removed from office.
  3. In addition to meeting the requirements of subsection (2) of this section, after taking office, each school board member shall be required to file annually in the office of the school board a certificate of completion of a course of continuing education conducted by the Mississippi School Boards Association. In addition, those board members required to attend the additional training as provided in Section 37-3-4(5)(c) shall be required to comply with the annual certification provided herein for such additional training.
  4. Every school board member selected after July 1, 2002, shall spend at least one (1) full day in a school in the district they represent, without compensation.
  5. Upon the failure of any local school board member to file with the school board the certificate of completion of the basic or continuing course of training as provided in subsection (2) or (3) of this section, or the additional training as required in Section 37-3-4(5)(c), the school board member shall be removed from office by the Attorney General. In the event of a medical or other catastrophic hardship that prevents such school board member from obtaining the required training or filing such certificate, as may be defined by the Board of Directors of the Mississippi School Boards Association by rule and regulation, an additional period of three (3) months may be allowed to satisfy the requirements of subsection (2) or (3).

HISTORY: Laws, 1991, ch. 502, § 11; Laws, 1993, ch. 562, § 3; Laws, 1998, ch. 564, § 2; Laws, 2000, ch. 533, § 7; Laws, 2000, ch. 610, §§ 5, 7; Laws, 2002, ch. 611, § 5; Laws, 2006, ch. 334, § 2; Laws, 2006, ch. 335, § 2; Laws, 2008, ch. 338, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2008.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 2 of ch. 334, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 9, 2006), amended this section. Section 2 of ch. 335, Laws of 2006, effective from and after July 1, 2006 (approved March 13, 2006), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 2 of ch. 335, Laws of 2006, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Editor’s Notes —

The United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1991, ch. 502, § 11, on July 9, 1991.

On July 13, 1998, the United States Attorney General interposed no objection under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 1998, ch. 564, § 2.

Laws of 2000, ch. 610, § 7, provides:

“SECTION 7. Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 11 of House Bill No. 1134, 2000 Regular Session [ Laws of 2000, ch. 533], which established an incentive grant program for improving schools and an accountability program for low-performing schools, are hereby repealed.”

The repeal had the effect of repealing the amendments to this section made by Laws of 2000, ch. 533, § 7.

The United States Attorney General, by letter dated July 28, 2000, interposed no objection, under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, to the amendment of this section by Laws of 2000, ch. 610, § 5.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2000 amendment (ch. 533) added present (1) and (4) and redesignated the remaining subsections accordingly; substituted “subsection (2) ” for “subsection (1) ” in (3) and (5); and added “by the Attorney General ” at the end of (5).

The second 2000 amendment (ch. 610) repealed the amendments to the section made by Laws, 2000, ch. 533, § 7; added present (1) and (4) and redesignated the remaining subsections accordingly; added “the community/junior colleges, the state institutions of higher learning or other organizations approved by the State Board of Education ” at the end of present (3); and rewrote present (5).

The 2002 amendment, in (2), deleted “or six (6) months from April 15, 1993” following “within six (6) months of his selection”; and in (3), deleted “the community/junior colleges, the state institutions of higher learning or other organizations approved by the State Board of Education” following “Mississippi School Boards Association.”

The first 2006 amendment (ch. 334), in (2), rewrote the second sentence, and substituted “Mississippi School Boards Association” for “School Executive Management Institute” in the third sentence; and in the last sentence of (5), substituted “Board of Directors of the Mississippi School Boards Association” for “State Board of Education.”

The second 2006 amendment (ch. 335), made the same changes as those in Laws of 2006, ch. 334, § 2.

The 2008 amendment added the last sentence of (3); and inserted “or the additional training as required in Section 37-3-4(5)(c) in the first sentence of (5).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Training is a prerequisite to taking office as a local school board member. Thompson, Oct. 30, 1991, A.G. Op. #91-0795.

Individual need not comply with filing requirements as a prerequisite to qualifying as a candidate; however, if the individual has not previously filed the required certificate of completion with the circuit clerk, he would be required to do so in order to be eligible to be sworn into office or exercise any functions of the office. Hart, Feb. 20, 1992, A.G. Op. #91-0105.

If newly appointed school board member fails to file certificate of training within six months from commencement of term of office, vacancy will be declared. Gex, March 4, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0151.

Candidate must possess high school diploma or GED equivalent before he enters duties of office but is not required to have same to qualify as candidate. Union County Election Commission, Sept. 30, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0779.

Specific language of Miss. Code Section 37-7-306 (1) provides that prerequisite requirement of high school education or GED equivalent only applies to individuals elected to school board for full term; therefore, individual elected to serve only remainder of term is not subject to this requirement. Jones, May 26, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0368.

School board member selected under statute with term of office commencing January 1, 1993 who had not received training by June 31, 1993 would not be removed from office because pursuant to House Bill 1441 [Laws of 1993, ch. 562, § 3], period for training was reset to begin April 15, 1993 and therefore such an individual would have six months from April 15 in which to obtain the required training. Bradley, July 29, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0530.

Most agricultural high schools have been subsumed into community college systems which administer them; therefore, members of community college board who operate agricultural high school are not required to attend training sessions required for school board members of local school districts; only agricultural high school operated by board of trustees independent of community college would be required to meet training requirements of Section 37-7-306. Bradley Sept. 9, 1993, A.G. Op. #93-0643.

School board members must receive six hours of continuing education training during the 2004-2005 school year. Chaney, Aug. 6, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0334.

The Mississippi School Boards Association has the authority to charge an amount equal to the actual cost of training for continuing education for school board members. Chaney, Aug. 6, 2004, A.G. Op. 04-0334.

§ 37-7-307. Regulation of leaves for licensed and nonlicensed employees; employment of substitute teachers; donations of leave to other employees; accumulated leave; conversion of certain vacation days to sick leave; definitions.

  1. For purposes of this section, the term “licensed employee” means any employee of a public school district required to hold a valid license by the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development.
  2. The school board of a school district shall establish by rules and regulations a policy of sick leave with pay for licensed employees and teacher assistants employed in the school district, and such policy shall include the following minimum provisions for sick and emergency leave with pay:
    1. Each licensed employee and teacher assistant, at the beginning of each school year, shall be credited with a minimum sick leave allowance, with pay, of seven (7) days for absences caused by illness or physical disability of the employee during that school year.
    2. Any unused portion of the total sick leave allowance shall be carried over to the next school year and credited to such licensed employee and teacher assistant if the licensed employee or teacher assistant remains employed in the same school district. In the event any public school licensed employee or teacher assistant transfers from one public school district in Mississippi to another, any unused portion of the total sick leave allowance credited to such licensed employee or teacher assistant shall be credited to such licensed employee or teacher assistant in the computation of unused leave for retirement purposes under Section 25-11-109. Accumulation of sick leave allowed under this section shall be unlimited.
    3. No deduction from the pay of such licensed employee or teacher assistant may be made because of absence of such licensed employee or teacher assistant caused by illness or physical disability of the licensed employee or teacher assistant until after all sick leave allowance credited to such licensed employee or teacher assistant has been used.
    4. For the first ten (10) days of absence of a licensed employee because of illness or physical disability, in any school year, in excess of the sick leave allowance credited to such licensed employee, there shall be deducted from the pay of such licensed employee the established substitute amount of licensed employee compensation paid in that local school district, necessitated because of the absence of the licensed employee as a result of illness or physical disability. In lieu of deducting the established substitute amount from the pay of such licensed employee, the policy may allow the licensed employee to receive full pay for the first ten (10) days of absence because of illness or physical disability, in any school year, in excess of the sick leave allowance credited to such licensed employee. Thereafter, the regular pay of such absent licensed employee shall be suspended and withheld in its entirety for any period of absence because of illness or physical disability during that school year.
    1. Beginning with the school year 1983-1984, each licensed employee at the beginning of each school year shall be credited with a minimum personal leave allowance, with pay, of two (2) days for absences caused by personal reasons during that school year. Effective for the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years, licensed employees shall be credited with an additional one-half (1/2) day of personal leave for every day the licensed employee is furloughed without pay as provided in Section 37-7-308. Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection, such personal leave shall not be taken on the first day of the school term, the last day of the school term, on a day previous to a holiday or a day after a holiday. Personal leave may be used for professional purposes, including absences caused by attendance of such licensed employee at a seminar, class, training program, professional association or other functions designed for educators. No deduction from the pay of such licensed employee may be made because of absence of such licensed employee caused by personal reasons until after all personal leave allowance credited to such licensed employee has been used. However, the superintendent of a school district, in his discretion, may allow a licensed employee personal leave in addition to any minimum personal leave allowance, under the condition that there shall be deducted from the salary of such licensed employee the actual amount of any compensation paid to any person as a substitute, necessitated because of the absence of the licensed employee. Any unused portion of the total personal leave allowance up to five (5) days shall be carried over to the next school year and credited to such licensed employee if the licensed employee remains employed in the same school district. Any personal leave allowed for a furlough day shall not be carried over to the next school year.
    2. Notwithstanding the restrictions on the use of personal leave prescribed under paragraph (a) of this subsection, a licensed employee may use personal leave as follows:
      1. Personal leave may be taken on the first day of the school term, the last day of the school term, on a day previous to a holiday or a day after a holiday if, on the applicable day, an immediate family member of the employee is being deployed for military service.
      2. Personal leave may be taken on a day previous to a holiday or a day after a holiday if an employee of a school district has either a minimum of ten (10) years’ experience as an employee of that school district or a minimum of thirty (30) days of unused accumulated leave that has been earned while employed in that school district.
      3. Personal leave may be taken on the first day of the school term, the last day of the school term, on a day previous to a holiday or a day after a holiday if, on the applicable day, the employee has been summoned to appear for jury duty or as a witness in court.
  3. Beginning with the school year 1992-1993, each licensed employee shall be credited with a professional leave allowance, with pay, for each day of absence caused by reason of such employee’s statutorily required membership and attendance at a regular or special meeting held within the State of Mississippi of the State Board of Education, the Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development, the Commission on School Accreditation, the Mississippi Authority for Educational Television, the meetings of the state textbook rating committees or other meetings authorized by local school board policy.
  4. Upon retirement from employment, each licensed and nonlicensed employee shall be paid for not more than thirty (30) days of unused accumulated leave earned while employed by the school district in which the employee is last employed. Such payment for licensed employees shall be made by the school district at a rate equal to the amount paid to substitute teachers and for nonlicensed employees, the payment shall be made by the school district at a rate equal to the federal minimum wage. The payment shall be treated in the same manner for retirement purposes as a lump-sum payment for personal leave as provided in Section 25-11-103(f). Any remaining lawfully credited unused leave, for which payment has not been made, shall be certified to the Public Employees’ Retirement System in the same manner and subject to the same limitations as otherwise provided by law for unused leave. No payment for unused accumulated leave may be made to either a licensed or nonlicensed employee at termination or separation from service for any purpose other than for the purpose of retirement.
  5. The school board may adopt rules and regulations which will reasonably aid to implement the policy of sick and personal leave, including, but not limited to, rules and regulations having the following general effect:
    1. Requiring the absent employee to furnish the certificate of a physician or dentist or other medical practitioner as to the illness of the absent licensed employee, where the absence is for four (4) or more consecutive school days, or for two (2) consecutive school days immediately preceding or following a nonschool day;
    2. Providing penalties, by way of full deduction from salary, or entry on the work record of the employee, or other appropriate penalties, for any materially false statement by the employee as to the cause of absence;
    3. Forfeiture of accumulated or future sick leave, if the absence of the employee is caused by optional dental or medical treatment or surgery which could, without medical risk, have been provided, furnished or performed at a time when school was not in session;
    4. Enlarging, increasing or providing greater sick or personal leave allowances than the minimum standards established by this section in the discretion of the school board of each school district.
  6. School boards may include in their budgets provisions for the payment of substitute employees, necessitated because of the absence of regular licensed employees. All such substitute employees shall be paid wholly from district funds, except as otherwise provided for long-term substitute teachers in Section 37-19-20. Such school boards, in their discretion, also may pay, from district funds other than adequate education program funds, the whole or any part of the salaries of all employees granted leaves for the purpose of special studies or training.
  7. The school board may further adopt rules and regulations which will reasonably implement such leave policies for all other nonlicensed and hourly paid school employees as the board deems appropriate. Effective for the 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school years, nonlicensed employees shall be credited with an additional one-half (1/2) day of personal leave for every day the nonlicensed employee is furloughed without pay as provided in Section 37-7-308.
  8. Vacation leave granted to either licensed or nonlicensed employees shall be synonymous with personal leave. Unused vacation or personal leave accumulated by licensed employees in excess of the maximum five (5) days which may be carried over from one year to the next may be converted to sick leave. The annual conversion of unused vacation or personal leave to sick days for licensed or unlicensed employees shall not exceed the allowable number of personal leave days as provided in Section 25-3-93. The annual total number of converted unused vacation and/or personal days added to the annual unused sick days for any employee shall not exceed the combined allowable number of days per year provided in Sections 25-3-93 and 25-3-95. Local school board policies that provide for vacation, personal and sick leave for employees shall not exceed the provisions for leave as provided in Sections 25-3-93 and 25-3-95. Any personal or vacation leave previously converted to sick leave under a lawfully adopted policy before May 1, 2004, or such personal or vacation leave accumulated and available for use prior to May 1, 2004, under a lawfully adopted policy but converted to sick leave after May 1, 2004, shall be recognized as accrued leave by the local school district and available for use by the employee. The leave converted under a lawfully adopted policy prior to May 1, 2004, or such personal and vacation leave accumulated and available for use as of May 1, 2004, which was subsequently converted to sick leave may be certified to the Public Employees’ Retirement System upon termination of employment and any such leave previously converted and certified to the Public Employees’ Retirement System shall be recognized.
    1. For the purposes of this subsection, the following words and phrases shall have the meaning ascribed in this paragraph unless the context requires otherwise:
      1. “Catastrophic injury or illness” means a life-threatening injury or illness of an employee or a member of an employee’s immediate family that totally incapacitates the employee from work, as verified by a licensed physician, and forces the employee to exhaust all leave time earned by that employee, resulting in the loss of compensation from the local school district for the employee. Conditions that are short-term in nature, including, but not limited to, common illnesses such as influenza and the measles, and common injuries, are not catastrophic. Chronic illnesses or injuries, such as cancer or major surgery, that result in intermittent absences from work and that are long-term in nature and require long recuperation periods may be considered catastrophic.
      2. “Immediate family” means spouse, parent, stepparent, sibling, child or stepchild.
    2. Any school district employee may donate a portion of his or her unused accumulated personal leave or sick leave to another employee of the same school district who is suffering from a catastrophic injury or illness or who has a member of his or her immediate family suffering from a catastrophic injury or illness, in accordance with the following:
      1. The employee donating the leave (the “donor employee”) shall designate the employee who is to receive the leave (the “recipient employee”) and the amount of unused accumulated personal leave and sick leave that is to be donated, and shall notify the school district superintendent or his designee of his or her designation.
      2. The maximum amount of unused accumulated personal leave that an employee may donate to any other employee may not exceed a number of days that would leave the donor employee with fewer than seven (7) days of personal leave remaining, and the maximum amount of unused accumulated sick leave that an employee may donate to any other employee may not exceed fifty percent (50%) of the unused accumulated sick leave of the donor employee.
      3. An employee must have exhausted all of his or her available leave before he or she will be eligible to receive any leave donated by another employee. Eligibility for donated leave shall be based upon review and approval by the donor employee’s supervisor.
      4. Before an employee may receive donated leave, he or she must provide the school district superintendent or his designee with a physician’s statement that states that the illness meets the catastrophic criteria established under this section, the beginning date of the catastrophic injury or illness, a description of the injury or illness, and a prognosis for recovery and the anticipated date that the recipient employee will be able to return to work.
      5. Before an employee may receive donated leave, the superintendent of education of the school district shall appoint a review committee to approve or disapprove the said donations of leave, including the determination that the illness is catastrophic within the meaning of this section.
      6. If the total amount of leave that is donated to any employee is not used by the recipient employee, the whole days of donated leave shall be returned to the donor employees on a pro rata basis, based on the ratio of the number of days of leave donated by each donor employee to the total number of days of leave donated by all donor employees.
      7. Donated leave shall not be used in lieu of disability retirement.
  9. Effective January 1, 2020, the provisions of this section shall be fully applicable to any licensed employee of the Mississippi School of the Arts (MSA).

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-28; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 8; Laws, 1978, ch. 513, § 1, 1982, ch. 491; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 13; Laws, 1986, ch. 493; Laws, 1987, ch. 307, § 5, 1992, ch. 450, § 1; Laws, 1994, ch. 623, § 1; Laws, 1995, ch. 586, § 1; Laws, 1996, ch. 548, § 1; Laws, 1998, ch. 580, § 1; Laws, 1999, ch. 561, § 2; Laws, 2003, ch. 458, § 1; Laws, 2003, ch. 546, § 1; Laws, 2004, ch. 480, § 1; Laws, 2005, ch. 354, § 1; Laws, 2010, ch. 486, § 3; Laws, 2012, ch. 463, § 1; Laws, 2012, ch. 543, § 7; Laws, 2015, ch. 341, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2015; Laws, 2019, ch. 307, § 1; Laws, 2019, ch. 432, § 5, eff from and after July 1, 2019.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 458, Laws of 2003, effective July 1, 2003 (approved March 23, 2003), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 546, Laws of 2003, effective July 1, 2003 (approved April 22, 2003), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 546, Laws of 2003, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a publishing error in the fourth sentence of (a), substituting “May 1, 2004” for “the effective date of Senate Bill No. 2297, 2004 Regular Session.”

Section 7 of ch. 543, Laws of 2012, effective from and after July 1, 2012 (approved May 22, 2012), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 463, Laws of 2012, effective July 1, 2012 (approved April 23, 2012), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 7 of ch. 543, Laws of 2012, pursuant to Section 1-3-79, which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, and the effective dates of the amendments are the same, the amendment with the latest approval date supersedes all other amendments to the same section approved on an earlier date.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected an error in this section. In (10)(b)(v), the word “within” was substituted for “with.” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 16, 2012, meeting.

Section 1 of Chapter 307, Laws of 2019, effective July 1, 2019 (approved March 15, 2019), amended this section. Section 5 of Chapter 532, Laws of 2019, effective July 1, 2019 (approved March 29, 2019), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of both amendments pursuant to Section 1-1-109 which gives the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision, and Publication of Legislation authority to integrate amendments so that all versions of the same code section enacted within the same legislative session may become effective. The Joint Committee on Compilation, Revision, and Publication of Legislation ratified the integration of these amendments as consistent with the legislative intent at the August 12, 2019, meeting of the Committee.

Pursuant to Section 1-1-109, the Joint Legislative Committee on Compilation, Revision and Publication of Legislation corrected a statutory reference in the third sentence of subsection (5) by substituting “ Section 25-11-103(f)” for “ Section 25-11-103(e).” The Joint Committee ratified the correction at its August 12, 2019, meeting.

Editor’s Notes —

Section 37-19-20 referred to in (7) was repealed by Laws of 2002, ch. 551 § 6, effective from and after July 1, 2002.

Section 37-7-308, referred to in (8), was repealed by Laws of 2010, ch. 486, § 2, effective July 1, 2012.

Amendment Notes —

The 1999 amendment inserted “except as otherwise provided for long-term substitute teachers in Section 37-19-20” in (7).

The first 2003 amendment (ch. 458) added “and teacher assistants” and “or teacher assistant” throughout the section; in (3) added last sentence.

The second 2003 amendment (ch. 546) rewrote the section.

The 2004 amendment rewrote the section to include teacher assistants, payment of accumulated leave for retirement, conversion of some vacation days to sick leave and expansion of the definition of catastrophic illness.

The 2005 amendment added “unless on such days an immediate family member of the employee is being deployed for military service” at the end of the first sentence of (3); rewrote (9) to revise the determination of the annual conversion of unused vacation or personal leave to sick leave for licensed or unlicensed school employees, and to recognize leave accumulated under previous policy; and substituted “local school district” for “state” in (10)(a)(i).

The 2010 amendment, in (3), added the second and last sentences; and added the last sentence in (8).

The first 2012 amendment (ch. 463), added the second sentence in (2); and made minor stylistic changes.

The second 2012 amendment (ch. 543), in (2)(d), substituted “shall be deducted” for “may be deducted” in the first sentence, inserted the second sentence, and substituted “shall be suspended” for “may be suspended” in the last sentence; deleted “or another” following “same” in the introductory paragraph of (10)(b); inserted “that the illness meets the catastrophic criteria established under this section” in (10)(b)(iv); and added (10)(b)(v) and redesignated former (10)(b)(v) and (vi) and (10)(b)(vi) as (vii), respectively.

The 2015 amendment, in the third sentence of (3)(a), added the exception at the beginning, and deleted “unless on such days an immediate family member of the employee is being deployed for military service” from the end; and added (3)(b).

The first 2019 amendment (ch. 307),, in (3), added (3)(b)(iv) and the last paragraph; and added "grandparent, stepbrother or stepsister" at the end of (10)(a)(ii).

The second 2019 amendment (ch. 432), added (11).

Cross References —

Public Employees’ Retirement System generally, see §25-11-101 et seq.

Substitute-teaching by retired school teachers over seventy years of age, see §25-11-127.

Mississippi State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Commission on Teacher and Administrator Education, Certification and Licensure and Development created, see §37-3-2.

Commission on School Accreditation created, see §37-17-3.

Mississippi authority for educational television generally, see §37-63-1 et seq.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Since the Constitution requires a full-time school teacher be a member of the State board of education, there should be no impediment to this service. It follows that the local school board should use its discretion to allow the teacher chosen as much freedom as possible to carry out the duties and responsibilities of this position. Davis, Oct. 31, 1991, A.G. Op. #91-0815.

No penalty should attach itself directly or indirectly to the appointee to this constitutional board. Davis, Oct. 31, 1991, A.G. Op. #91-0815.

School district may establish a procedure whereby an individual teacher may petition the school board for a grant of additional sick leave due to exceptional circumstances. Ellis, May 8, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0342.

Sick leave is personal to teacher and there appears to be no method authorizing transfer of sick leave from one employee to another, although pursuant to Section 37-7-307 subsection (5)(d) district may establish procedure wherein an individual teacher may petition board for grant of additional sick leave under exceptional circumstances. Atkinson, Feb. 3, 1994, A.G. Op. #94-0040.

Any unused leave for which payment is not received will be applied to creditable service in accordance with Section 25-11-103(h). Such authorization would be effective for payment of unused leave to the person designated by such employee for this purpose, or, in the absence of such designation, to the beneficiary of such employee, or to the estate, in the event of the death of the employee prior to retirement. Walker, May 11, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0319.

The statute allows leave to be donated for catastrophic injury or illness, but does not allow for the donation of leave in the event of death. Bordis, October 16, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0562.

The estate of a deceased employee may not donate unused accumulated sick leave or personal leave to another district employee. Bordis, October 16, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0562.

“Immediate family,” as defined in subsection (9)(ii) does not include a grandchild. Bordis, October 16, 1998, A.G. Op. #98-0562.

Although there is no authority to establish a scholarship program within the Jackson Public School District to reimburse teachers one-half of the tuition cost of gaining certification in library science, the authority granted in subsection (7) of this section could be used to help effect such purpose. Sargent, April 2, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0122.

Because this section does not differentiate between sick leave or personal leave, an employee may, upon retirement from employment, be paid for up to 30 days total sick and/or personal leave; this payment can be made only in cases where the employee makes a complete severance of employment in state service and makes application for retirement benefits following separation. Cartier, June 4, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0244.

A county school district did not have authority to pay a teacher for unused accumulated leave as the statute in effect at the time the teacher resigned did not provide for payment of unused accumulated leave to certificated employees. Chaney, Jr., May 1, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0191.

A school board cannot pay a retiring licensed employee at the employee’s daily rate of pay rather than the substitute teacher rate of pay. McAlpin, July 14, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0354.

A county school district may enact a policy that allows an employee two days leave in the following year if the employee has perfect attendance in the previous year. Ball, Nov. 19, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0650.

The statute applies to administrative/supervisory employees of the school district, as these employees must either be classified as licensed or non-licensed employees. Harral, June 21, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0236.

Whether to permit pro-rata, incremental deductions of leave is within the discretion of the school district board and exercise of that discretion should be evidenced by the board in it’s rules and regulations implementing sick and personal leave policies. Smith, Nov. 15, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0615.

A school board cannot pay a retiring administrator at the board’s substitute administrator rate of pay rather than the substitute teacher rate of pay. Marro, July 7, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0335.

If a school district has a policy which provides for an individual to be paid for any accrued leave upon death or termination of employment, the district may make payment for that unused, uncompensated leave to the employee upon termination of employment, and, in the event of the death, such payment may be made to the person designated by such employee prior to employee’s death. Adams, Oct. 3, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0468.

Subdivision (6)(d) of this section provides the authority to a school board to adopt a policy which would allow for the payment of unused accrued personal or sick leave to employees who leave service for reasons other than retirement. While subsection (5) limits the rate of pay for the lump sum payment upon retirement to either the substitute teacher rate of pay or the federal minimum wage, any policy adopted by local school boards for employees leaving service for reasons other than retirement would not be so limited, and could allow employees to receive a lump sum payment calculated at their regular rate of pay, and for any number of days as determined by the school board. This opinion clarifies Adams, Oct. 3, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0468. Ready, Mar. 26, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0644.

Subsection (6) of this section authorizes expansion of sick and personal leave allowances, but does not grant any authority to local school districts to create any additional types of leave. Further, only sick and personal leave are certifiable to PERS for creditable service upon retirement. Opinion clarifies Adams, Oct. 3, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0468. Ready, Mar. 26, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0644.

The specific limitation of subsection (3) of this section detailing how much time may be carried over and under what circumstances it may be carried over is controlling. Opinion clarifies Adams, Oct. 3, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0468. Ready, Mar. 26, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0644.

No authority exists for a school district to enact a policy authorizing employees to convert accumulated personal leave to sick leave for purposes of certification to PERS for additional service credit. Opinion clarifies Adams, Oct. 3, 2003, A.G. Op. 03-0468. Ready, Mar. 26, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0644.

The board of trustees of a local school district must make a determination on a case-by-case basis as to whether an employee’s particular illness is a condition which meets the statutory definition of “catastrophic injury or illness.” Cox, July 22, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0499.

As a result of the 2005 amendment to Section 37-7-307, a school district may not maintain its existing leave policy that exceeds the combined personal and sick leave policy for state employees. The amendment supercedes McAlpin, July 31, 1995, A.G. Op. 95-0405. Chaney, Aug. 12, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0367.

A school board policy that grants a “bonus” day of personal leave for perfect attendance for both licensed and non-licensed employees is permissible under Section 37-7-307 and would not violate Miss. Const. Art. 4, § 96, as long as the extra leave does not cause the total amount of leave granted to the employees to exceed the limitations of Section 37-7-307(9). Jacks, Dec. 27, 2005, A.G. Op. 05-0600.

A school district may implement a leave policy which pays part-time hourly employees for leave taken in recognition of a federal holiday if the holidays granted do not exceed those permitted by the state and if the policy is applied consistently to all part-time hourly employees. Chaney, Feb. 2, 2006, A.G. Op. 04-0646.

A serious and complicated pregnancy that totally incapacitates an employee from work may be determined to be “catastrophic illness,” as defined by Section 37-7-307(10)(a)(I). Elliot, Feb. 10, 2006, A.G. Op. 06-0032.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Who is eligible employee under § 101(2) of family and medical leave act (29 U.S.C.S. § 2611(2)). 166 A.L.R. Fed. 569.

Adequacy of notice to employer of need for leave under Federal Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. 184 A.L.R. Fed. 171.

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 200.

16A Am. Jur. Legal Forms 2d, Schools §§ 229:253 et seq.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools and School Districts §§ 461, 522, 531.

§ 37-7-308. Repealed.

Repealed by its own terms, effective July 1, 2012.

§37-7-308. [Laws, 2010, ch. 486, § 2, eff from and after passage (approved Apr. 7, 2010.)]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-308 related to the furlough of instructional, noninstructional and administrative employees.

§ 37-7-309. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 46, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

[Codes, 1942, § 6328-30; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 10]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-309 provided for expenditure of school district funds for incidentals.

§ 37-7-311. Organization of school.

The school board shall organize a school so as to avoid unnecessary duplication and shall determine what grades shall be taught at each school and shall have the power to specify attendance areas and to designate the school each pupil shall attend.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-31; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 17, § 11; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 14, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

Abolition, reorganization or alteration of district by school board, see §§37-7-103,37-7-105.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Consolidation of schools; transfer of students.

3. Appeal.

4. Miscellaneous.

1. In general.

The grant to county boards of education of power to organize and establish schools does not confer judicial or quasi-judicial power, but the power granted is purely administrative and legislative. County Board of Education v. Smith, 239 Miss. 53, 121 So. 2d 139, 1960 Miss. LEXIS 266 (Miss. 1960).

2. Consolidation of schools; transfer of students.

A public school board had the authority to consolidate schools within its district and to reassign students en masse; the plan was not a “reorganization of the school district” within the meaning of §37-7-105. Section37-7-105 and its petition, publication and referendum procedures do not apply to everything the school board may wish to abolish, alter or reorganize. The statute applies only where the school board “abolishes, alters or reorganizes a school district.” The phrase “school district” imports the geographic boundaries of the district and perhaps the corporate organization or structure thereof. The school board’s plan did not alter the existing structure of the school district, which remained a county-wide district, and did not reorganize corporate structure, and therefore §§37-7-103 and 37-7-105 did not apply. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

It was not the intention of the legislature by this section [Code 1942, § 6328-31] to mean that the board of trustees may transfer students en masse from one school or attendance center to another, for where there is a transfer of pupils other than on an individual basis it would prevent uniformity by permitting the center losing pupils to keep all the money allocated to it. Board of Educ. v. Wilburn, 223 So. 2d 665, 1969 Miss. LEXIS 1289 (Miss. 1969), overruled, In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

3. Appeal.

Courts on appeal from a determination of a county board of education are limited to the question whether the action of the board is supported by substantial evidence or is arbitrary or capricious, or transcends its power, or violates some statutory or constitutional right of an interested party. County Board of Education v. Smith, 239 Miss. 53, 121 So. 2d 139, 1960 Miss. LEXIS 266 (Miss. 1960).

4. Miscellaneous.

Students who live in one school district organized under Ch 12, Laws of 1953, Ex Session former [Miss. Code Ann. §§37-7-1 et seq], may not attend school in another school district without the consent and approval of the board of trustees of the district wherein such students reside. Hinze v. Winston County Board of Education, 233 Miss. 867, 103 So. 2d 353, 1958 Miss. LEXIS 450 (Miss. 1958).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Sections 37-7-103, 37-7-113 and 37-7-311 allow a school board to organize its schools so as to serve the best interests of the schools and ultimately the students, and to avoid unnecessary duplication. Where the actions of local school boards do nothing to alter the existing geographical features, boundaries, or corporate structure of the school districts there is no necessity to seek State Board of Education approval. Burnham, February 15, 1995, A.G. Op. #95-0029.

§ 37-7-313. Repealed.

Repealed by Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 46, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

[Codes, 1942, §§ 6328-06, 6328-74; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 6; Laws, 1956, ch. 266, § 4; Laws, 1959, Ex Sess, ch. 29, 2; Laws, 1960, ch. 301, § 3; Laws, 1968, ch. 386.]

Editor’s Notes —

Former §37-7-313 authorized for contracts for attendance and transportation of pupils at schools operated by other school districts.

§ 37-7-315. Designation of school buildings and attendance centers.

In creating school districts under the provisions of Article 1 of this chapter, it shall not be necessary that the school board, in the order creating such districts, specify or designate the location of the school houses or attendance centers therein, and existing school buildings shall be retained as places of attendance until changed in the manner hereinafter set forth. Where any existing facilities or buildings shall not be used as attendance centers, the school board may utilize such facilities and buildings in connection with any related school activity which said school board may deem advisable.

The school board of any school district shall have the power and authority to designate the locations for school buildings and attendance centers in the school district subject to its jurisdiction and to change, alter or abolish the location of such school buildings and attendance centers from time to time as may be required by the educational needs of such school district. Where students from three (3) or more school districts are in attendance at one (1) attendance center by order of the respective school boards of the school districts, the use of the attendance center shall not be changed, altered or abolished except upon order of a majority of each of the school boards of the school districts from which pupils have been in attendance at the attendance center for the scholastic year; any acts, decisions, orders or resolutions by the school board of any such school district in conflict with this provision shall be null and void. If any change or alteration of the location of a school building or attendance center shall involve the construction of new school facilities, or the making of additions to, or the major repair, alteration or renovation of existing facilities, then such change or alteration shall not be effective until same shall have been submitted to and approved by the State Board of Education. There may be located and established in any school district as many school buildings and attendance centers as the educational needs of such district shall require. The school board of the school district shall have the power and authority to specify the attendance areas which shall be served by each school building or attendance center, and to change or alter same from time to time as necessity requires.

HISTORY: Codes, 1942, § 6328-05; Laws, 1953, Ex Sess, ch. 12, § 5; Laws, 1960, ch. 303; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 15, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Editor’s Notes —

Article 1 of this chapter, referred to in this section, was repealed by Laws of 1986, ch. 492, § 50, effective from and after July 1, 1987.

For present provisions relating to reorganization of school districts, see §37-7-103 et seq.

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Abolition, reorganization or alteration of district by school board, see §§37-7-103,37-7-105.

Acquisition of land outside of school district for construction of needed school buildings or other facilities, see §37-7-401.

Joint construction of buildings or operation of schools by adjoining school districts, see §37-7-403.

Roads, driveways and parking areas on school district property, and expenditure of funds for their construction and upkeep, see §65-7-74.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. In general.

2. Consolidation of schools; transfer of students.

1. In general.

Although ordinarily private individual may not maintain suit against school district to enforce zoning ordinance or to enjoin what is in essence public nuisance created by construction of school building, where construction of school building in violation of municipal offstreet parking ordinance would obstruct abutting landowner’s right of ingress and egress, landowner may obtain injunction against construction of building unless and until school district complies with parking ordinance. Robinson v. Indianola Municipal Separate School Dist., 467 So. 2d 911, 1985 Miss. LEXIS 1973 (Miss. 1985).

2. Consolidation of schools; transfer of students.

A public school board had the authority to consolidate schools within its district and to reassign students en masse; the plan was not a “reorganization of the school district” within the meaning of §37-7-105. Section37-7-105 and its petition, publication and referendum procedures do not apply to everything the school board may wish to abolish, alter or reorganize. The statute applies only where the school board “abolishes, alters or reorganizes a school district.” The phrase “school district” imports the geographic boundaries of the district and perhaps the corporate organization or structure thereof. The school board’s plan did not alter the existing structure of the school district, which remained a county-wide district, and did not reorganize corporate structure, and therefore §§37-7-103 and 37-7-105 did not apply. In re Petition of 2,952 Registered Voters, etc., 574 So. 2d 619, 1990 Miss. LEXIS 814 (Miss. 1990).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Each county is required under Miss. Code Ann. §19-7-1 to build a jail within the corporate limits of the municipality where the courts are required to sit. A municipality is obligated to grant a special exception to its zoning ordinances unless it is determined, consistent with the facts, that construction of a county jail would create a public nuisance or a clear and present danger to the public health and welfare. Yancey, Mitchell, March 23, 2007, A.G. Op. #07-00120, 2007 Miss. AG LEXIS 75.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur.

67B Am. Jur. 2d, Schools § 102.

CJS.

78 C.J.S., Schools, and School Districts §§ 739, 740, 745-754.

§ 37-7-317. Transfer of school recreational areas to counties and municipalities during summer recess.

The school board of any school district is hereby authorized, in its discretion, to transfer jurisdiction and control of any recreational property or part thereof under its dominion to the governing authorities of any municipality or county in which such property is located, provided, such transfer is temporary and commences not sooner than the day following the last school day of the academic year and ends not later than the day prior to the beginning of the next succeeding academic year. Any such transfer shall be made only with the concurrence of the governing authorities of any such municipality or county, and any agreement therefor shall be on such terms and conditions as said governing authorities and said school board shall provide. Any such agreement may include a provision that while such land is in the possession of said governing authorities, the municipality or the county, as the case may be, shall be liable for the upkeep, maintenance and repair of such property, the cost of which shall be paid out of any funds available to any such municipality or county.

HISTORY: Laws, 1973, ch. 415, § 1; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 16, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

Abolition, reorganization or alteration of district by school board, see §§37-7-103,37-7-105.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Use of school property for other than public school or religious purposes. 94 A.L.R.2d 1274.

§ 37-7-319. Purchase of group liability insurance coverage.

All public school boards may purchase group insurance coverage for the liability of all of its active full-time instructional and noninstructional personnel. Such policy shall be paid for with any funds available other than state minimum education program funds.

HISTORY: Laws, 1974, ch. 355; Laws, 1985, ch. 474, § 47; Laws, 1986, ch. 438, § 14; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 17; Laws, 1987, ch. 483, § 19; Laws, 1988, ch. 442, § 16; Laws, 1989, ch. 537, § 15; Laws, 1990, ch. 518, § 16; Laws, 1991, ch. 618, § 15; Laws, 1992, ch. 491 § 16, eff from and after passage (approved May 12, 1992).

Cross References —

Insurance on school property generally, see §37-7-303.

RESEARCH REFERENCES

ALR.

Modern status of doctrine of sovereign immunity as applied to public schools and institutions of higher learning. 33 A.L.R.3d 703.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents due to condition of buildings or equipment. 34 A.L.R.3d 1166.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents associated with the transportation of students. 34 A.L.R.3d 1210.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accident occurring during school athletic events. 35 A.L.R.3d 725.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents associated with chemistry experiments, shopwork and manual or vocational training. 35 A.L.R.3d 758.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents occurring in physical education classes. 36 A.L.R.3d 361.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents occurring during use of premises and equipment for other than school purposes. 37 A.L.R.3d 712.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for injuries due to condition of grounds, walks, and playgrounds. 37 A.L.R.3d 738.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for injuries resulting from lack or insufficiency of supervision. 38 A.L.R.3d 830.

Personal liability of public school teacher in negligence action for personal injury or death of student. 34 A.L.R.4th 228.

Personal liability of public school executive or administrative officer in negligence action for personal injury or death of student. 35 A.L.R.4th 272.

Personal liability in negligence action of public school employee, other than teacher or executive or administrative officer, for personal injury or death of student. 35 A.L.R.4th 328.

Tort liability of schools and institutions of higher learning for personal injury suffered during school field trip. 68 A.L.R.5th 519.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for accidents occurring during school athletic events. 68 A.L.R.5th 663.

Tort liability of public schools and institutions of higher learning for injury to student walking to or from school. 72 A.L.R.5th 469.

CJS.

78A C.J.S., Schools and School Districts § 887.

Law Reviews.

The History and Future of Sovereign Immunity for Mississippi School Districts. 58 Miss. L. J. 275, Fall 1988.

§ 37-7-321. Employment and designation of peace officers; minimum level of basic law enforcement training required; operation of radio broadcasting and transmission station; interlocal agreements with other law enforcement entities for provision of certain equipment or services.

  1. The school board of any school district within the State of Mississippi, in its discretion, may employ one or more persons as security personnel and may designate such persons as peace officers in or on any property operated for school purposes by such board upon their taking such oath and making such bond as required of a constable of the county in which the school district is situated.
  2. Any person employed by a school board as a security guard or school resource officer or in any other position that has the powers of a peace officer must receive a minimum level of basic law enforcement training, as jointly determined and prescribed by the Board on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Training and the State Board of Education, within two (2) years of the person’s initial employment in such position. Upon the failure of any person employed in such position to receive the required training within the designated time, the person may not exercise the powers of a peace officer in or on the property of the school district.
  3. The school board is authorized and empowered, in its discretion, and subject to the approval of the Federal Communications Commission, to install and operate a noncommercial radio broadcasting and transmission station for educational and vocational educational purposes.
  4. If a law enforcement officer is duly appointed to be a peace officer by a school district under this section, the local school board may enter into an interlocal agreement with other law enforcement entities for the provision of equipment or traffic control duties, however, the duty to enforce traffic regulations and to enforce the laws of the state or municipality off of school property lies with the local police or sheriff’s department which cannot withhold its services solely because of the lack of such an agreement.

HISTORY: Laws, 1975, ch. 351, § 1; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 18; Laws, 2000, ch. 437, § 1; Laws, 2006, ch. 441, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2006.

Amendment Notes —

The 2000 amendment, in (1), substituted “may designate such persons” for “and shall be authorized to designate them” and added “in which the school district is situated”; inserted present (2) and redesignated former (2) as present (3); and made other minor changes.

The 2006 amendment added (4).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. Immunity.

While Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-321 and Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-323 allowed schools to retain independent contractors to work as peace officers on school grounds, the legislature however did not provide an express grant of immunity to those independent contractors under Miss. Code Ann. §19-19-5 or the Mississippi Tort Claims Act (MTCA), Miss. Code Ann. §11-46-9; accordingly, the trial court erred in finding that the security contractor was immune to suit by virtue of the MTCA. Knight v. Terrell, 961 So. 2d 30, 2007 Miss. LEXIS 408 (Miss. 2007).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school district and a city may enter into an interlocal agreement for the provision of traffic control, although the duty to enforce traffic regulations lies with the police department and it can not withhold its services solely because of the lack of such an agreement. Noble, January 15, 1999, A.G. Op. #98-0714.

If a school board designates an off-duty law enforcement officer as a peace officer pursuant to §§37-7-321 and37-7-323, then the school district imbues the security guard with the powers and authority of a constable, which is a law enforcement officer under §19-19-5; as a law enforcement officer, this peace officer would be entitled to certain immunities from some federal and state claims. Thompson, June 25, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0316.

If a security guard is duly appointed to be a peace officer pursuant to §§37-7-321 and37-7-323, then the school district, as part of its statutory law enforcement responsibilities, may enter into an interlocal agreement with other law enforcement entities for the provision of equipment to its peace officer. Thompson, June 25, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0316.

No statutory authority can be found which would permit school employees to search a student vehicle that is parked on a city street, to designate parking on a city street or to control traffic flow of a city street; however, a school district and a city may enter into an interlocal agreement for the provision of traffic control, and city and county law enforcement agencies are authorized to contract with school districts for the provision of police protection. Taylor, July 7, 2004, A.G. Op. 03-0334.

§ 37-7-323. Application and enforcement of general criminal laws of state.

Any act which, if committed within the limits of a city, town or village, or in any public place, would be a violation of the general laws of this state, shall be criminal and punishable if done on the campus, grounds or roads of any of the public schools of this state. The peace officers duly appointed by the school board of any school district are vested with the powers and subjected to the duties of a constable for the purpose of preventing all violations of law on school property within the district, and for preserving order and decorum thereon. The peace officers duly appointed by the school board of any school district are also vested with the powers and subjected to the duties of a constable for the purpose of preventing all violations of law that occur within five hundred (500) feet of any property owned by the school district, if reasonably determined to have a possible impact on the safety of students, faculty or staff of the school district while on said property. Provided, however, that nothing in this section shall be interpreted to require action by any such peace officer appointed by a school district to events occurring outside the boundaries of school property, nor shall any such school district or its employees be liable for any failure to act to any event occurring outside the boundaries of property owned by the school district.

HISTORY: Laws, 1975, ch. 351, § 2; Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 19; Laws, 2006, ch. 441, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2006.

Amendment Notes —

The 2006 amendment added the last two sentences.

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

1. Immunity.

While Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-321 and Miss. Code Ann. §37-7-323 allowed schools to retain independent contractors to work as peace officers on school grounds, the legislature however did not provide an express grant of immunity to those independent contractors under Miss. Code Ann. §19-19-5 or the Mississippi Tort Claims Act (MTCA), Miss. Code Ann. §11-46-9; accordingly, the trial court erred in finding that the security contractor was immune to suit by virtue of the MTCA. Knight v. Terrell, 961 So. 2d 30, 2007 Miss. LEXIS 408 (Miss. 2007).

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

If a school board designates an off-duty law enforcement officer as a peace officer pursuant to §§37-7-321 and37-7-323, then the school district imbues the security guard with the powers and authority of a constable, which is a law enforcement officer under §19-19-5; as a law enforcement officer, this peace officer would be entitled to certain immunities from some federal and state claims. Thompson, June 25, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0316.

If a security guard is duly appointed to be a peace officer pursuant to §§37-7-321 and37-7-323, then the school district, as part of its statutory law enforcement responsibilities, may enter into an interlocal agreement with other law enforcement entities for the provision of equipment to its peace officer. Thompson, June 25, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0316.

§ 37-7-325. Obtaining funds from Tennessee Valley Authority’s Commercial and Industrial Energy Conservation Financing Plan.

Any school district in the State of Mississippi is hereby authorized and empowered to contract with and to be contracted with by the Tennessee Valley Authority for the purpose of obtaining funds from the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Commercial and Industrial Energy Conservation Financing Plan. The loan plan is designed to assist certain school districts to modify such school buildings as are determined to be energy-inefficient.

HISTORY: Laws, 1980, ch. 379, eff from and after passage (approved April 25, 1980).

Cross References —

Compliance with state energy conservation standards, see §37-47-15.

§ 37-7-327. Establishment and operation of orphanage public school.

The school board in any county in which is located an orphanage with fifty (50) or more children of educable age residing therein, at any regular or called meeting, may in its discretion establish an orphanage public school, said school to embrace only such territory owned and occupied by such orphanage, for such orphanage children, provided that a majority of the board of trustees or directors of such orphanage first petition the school board in writing to so establish a public school. Such school when established shall be designated as an orphanage public school.

After such school is established and before a public school is opened, the management of such orphanage must first tender to the superintendent of schools a satisfactory building and educational equipment for said school and enter into a contract with the superintendent of schools agreeing to furnish such building and equipment and to provide for its upkeep, fuel and such other things necessary for the successful operation of the school plant.

When an orphanage public school is established under this section and the conditions as set forth above are met, the superintendent of schools shall have all children of educable age residing in such orphanage enumerated in the manner as is now prescribed by law. Said orphanage public school shall receive financial support from any and all sources from which public school districts now receive support under the law except from funds derived from local tax levies. Said funds shall be paid into the school district depository to the credit of that orphanage public school fund and the same are to be paid out upon presentation of the superintendent’s pay certificate.

An orphanage public school shall be under the direct control of the school board.

This section shall not be construed to repeal any other law or to abridge the rights and privileges heretofore exercised by the children of any orphanage.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 20, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

§ 37-7-329. Establishment and operation of schools exclusively for Indians.

In a school district where there are Indian children, or children of any race not otherwise provided for by law with educational advantages, sufficient to form a school, the school board may locate one or more schools exclusively for Indians, or children of such other race, and pay salaries of teachers for same, and provide for the transportation of the children, under rules and regulations prescribed by the State Board of Education. Special licenses may be provided by the director of the division of instruction for teachers of Indian schools and other schools mentioned in this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 21, eff from and after July 1, 1987.

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

§ 37-7-333. Control of funds for support and maintenance of schools; reports of tax collector; deposit of funds.

The school boards of all school districts shall have full control of the receipt, distribution, allotment and disbursement of all funds which may be provided for the support and maintenance of the schools of such district whether such funds be minimum education program allotments, funds derived from supplementary tax levies as authorized by law, or funds derived from any other source whatsoever except as may otherwise be provided by law for control of the proceeds from school bonds or notes and the taxes levied to pay the principal of and interest on such bonds or notes. The tax collector of each county shall make reports, in writing, verified by his affidavit, on or before the twentieth day of each month to the superintendent of schools of each school district within such county reflecting all school district taxes collected by him for the support of said school district during the preceding month. He shall at the same time pay over all such school district taxes collected by him for the support of said school district directly to said superintendent of schools.

All such allotments or funds shall be placed in the depository or depositories selected by the school board in the same manner as provided in Section 27-105-305 for the selection of county depositories. Provided, however, the annual notice to be given by the school board to financial institutions may be given by the school board at any regular meeting subsequent to the board’s regular December meeting but prior to the regular May meeting. The bids of financial institutions for the privilege of keeping school funds may be received by the school board at some subsequent meeting, but no later than the regular June meeting; and the selection by the school board of the depository or depositories shall be effective on July 1 of each year. School boards shall advertise and accept bids for depositories, no less than once every three (3) years, when such board determines that it can obtain a more favorable rate of interest and less administrative processing. Such depository shall place on deposit with the superintendent of schools the same securities as required in Section 27-105-315.

In the event a bank submits a bid or offer to a school district to act as a depository for the district and such bid or offer, if accepted, would result in a contract in which a member of the school board would have a direct or indirect interest, the school board should not open or consider any bids received. The superintendent of schools shall submit the matter to the State Treasurer, who shall have the authority to solicit bids, select a depository or depositories, make all decisions and take any action within the authority of the school board under this section relating to the selection of a depository or depositories.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 22; Laws, 1991, ch. 534, § 2; Laws, 1992, ch. 409, § 1; Laws, 1995, ch. 422, § 1; Laws, 1997, ch. 391, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 1997.

Cross References —

State Treasurer generally, see §7-9-1 et seq.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school board may, in the exercise its discretion, re-issue a pay warrant to a former teacher, where the original pay warrant was never deposited or negotiated. Smith, June 25, 1992, A.G. Op. #92-0470.

The board of trustees of a county school district may accept from a qualified financial institution as pledged security for school funds placed in such institution, surety bonds of any surety company authorized to do business in Mississippi, provided that such bonds are not rated substandard by any of the appropriate supervisory authorities having jurisdiction over such depository or by any recognized national rating agency engaged in the business of rating bonds; however, the board should be aware that surety bonds are not negotiable instruments which can be sold to recover lost deposits. Dickey, June 18, 1999, A.G. Op. #99-0287.

The prohibitions imposed by Section 109 of the Mississippi Constitution and Code Section 25-4-105(2) are eliminated if the school board and school superintendent follow the procedure stated in Code Section 37-7-333 when selecting a depository; however, the constitutional prohibitions are eliminated only with regard to the selection of a depository, and there would still be a conflict for other purposes, such as selecting and opening accounts in various banks, approval of securities pledged, and transfer and deposit of funds between depositories, etc. Manning, July 14, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0324.

Although no penalties are prescribed, the statutory requirement that in cases resulting in a conflict “the school board should not open or consider any bids received” and “the superintendent of schools shall submit the matter to the State Treasurer. . .” is mandatory. Manning, July 14, 2000, A.G. Op. #2000-0324.

The school board must be allowed to reject or approve all claims before pay certificates are issued by the superintendent of education; however, pay certificates may be issued by the superintendent without prior approval of the school board on the payment of specific claims in accordance with the exceptions set out in subsection 37-9-14(7). Henderson, Dec. 6, 2002, A.G. Op. #02-0658.

§ 37-7-335. Establishment of fees; hardship waiver policy.

  1. The school board of any school district shall be authorized to charge reasonable fees, but not more than the actual cost, for the following:
    1. Supplemental instructional materials and supplies, excluding textbooks;
    2. Any other fees designated by the local school board as fees related to a valid curriculum educational objective, including transportation; and
    3. Extracurricular activities and any other educational activities of the school district that are not designated by the local school board as valid curriculum educational objectives, such as band trips and athletic events.
    1. All fees authorized to be charged under this section, except those fees authorized under subsection (1)(c) of this section, shall be charged only upon the condition that the school board of each school district shall adopt a financial hardship waiver policy that shall be kept in the strictest of confidence with all files and personal disclosures restricted from review by the general public. The financial hardship waiver policy must be distributed in writing to pupils at the time of enrollment. Any family who qualifies for the National School Lunch Program, as created by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (42 USCS Section 1751 et seq.), shall receive a financial hardship waiver.

      The board shall insure that a pupil eligible to have any such fees waived as a result of an inability to pay for those fees, shall not be discriminated against nor shall there be any overt identification of any pupil who has received a financial hardship waiver by use of special tokens or tickets, announcements, posting or publication of names, physical separation, choice of materials or by any other means. In no case shall any school district’s procedures expose any pupil receiving a hardship waiver to any type of stigma or ridicule by other pupils or school district personnel.

    2. The confidentiality of the financial hardship waiver policy adopted by the school board shall apply to any students who have an inability to pay any fees authorized under subsection (1) of this section.
  2. In no case shall the inability to pay the assessment of fees authorized under the provisions of this section result in a pupil being denied or deprived of any academic awards or standards, any class selection, grade, diploma, transcript or the right to participate in any activity related to educational enhancement.

HISTORY: Laws, 1986, ch. 492, § 22; Laws, 1989, ch. 585, § 8, effective April 25, 1989 (became law without the Governor’s signature); Laws, 2007, ch. 380, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2007.

Editor’s Notes —

Section 9, ch. 585, Laws of 1989, provides as follows:

“SECTION 9. If any section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or any part of this act is declared to be unconstitutional or void, or if for any reason is declared to be invalid or of no effect, the remaining sections, paragraphs, sentences, clauses, phrases or parts thereof shall be in no manner affected thereby but shall remain in full force and effect.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2007 amendment in (2)(a), divided the former first paragraph into the present first and second paragraphs, and added the last two sentences in the first paragraph; deleted “(c)” following “subsection (1)” in (2)(b); and made minor stylistic changes.

Cross References —

Textbooks generally, see §37-43-1 et seq.

OPINIONS OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

A school board may, with proper notice, adopt a rule wherein further property belonging to the school may be withheld from a student who has lost, destroyed, or damaged school property entrusted to him or her until such time as the student or parents reimburse the school for the property. Chaney, Jr., Jan. 28, 2000, A.G. Op. #99-0723.

If optional workbooks are offered to students and a fee assessed, the workbooks should be available to all students equally and, therefore, a hardship waiver policy would have to be available to any student who was unable to purchase the workbook. Young, Oct. 5, 2001, A.G. Op. #01-0578.

§ 37-7-337. Plan to encourage community involvement in schools.

  1. The governing authorities of the county, counties or city in which a school district is located and the school board of each school district shall develop a five-year plan to encourage community involvement with the schools in such district.
  2. Districts meeting the highest levels of accreditation standards, as defined by the State Board of Education, shall be exempted from the mandatory provisions of this section.

HISTORY: Laws, 1992, ch. 419, § 12; Laws, 2006, ch. 417, § 7; reenacted without change, Laws, 2009, ch. 345, § 9; reenacted and amended, Laws, 2009, ch. 445, § 5, eff from and after July 1, 2009.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 5 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, effective from and after July 1, 2009 (approved March 26, 2009), amended this section. Section 9 of ch. 345, Laws of 2009, effective June 30, 2009 (approved March 16, 2009), reenacted this section without change. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 5 of ch. 445, Laws of 2009, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session, the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Editor’s Notes —

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, was vetoed by the Governor on May 3, 1992. The veto was overridden by the State Senate and House of Representatives on May 4, 1992.

Laws of 1992, ch. 419, § 34, effective from and after July 1, 1992, provides as follows:

“SECTION 34. Nothing in this act shall affect or defeat any claim, assessment, appeal, suit, right or cause of action for taxes due or accrued under the income, sales and use tax laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, whether such claims, assessments, appeals, suits or actions have been begun before the date on which this act becomes effective or are begun thereafter; and the provisions of the income, sales and use tax laws are expressly continued in full force, effect and operation for the purpose of the assessment, collection and enrollment of liens for any taxes due or accrued and the execution of any warrant under such laws before the date on which this act becomes effective, and for the imposition of any penalties, forfeitures or claims for failure to comply with such laws.”

Amendment Notes —

The 2006 amendment deleted the former last sentence in (1), which read: “Such plan shall be filed with the State Department of Education on or before January 1, 1993”; and added (2).

The first 2009 amendment (ch. 345), reenacted this section without change.

The second 2009 amendment (ch. 445), reenacted and amended the section by substituting “the highest levels of” for “Level 4 or 5” in (2).

Cross References —

State Board of Education generally, see §37-1-1 et seq.

Exemption from the provisions of this section for school districts meeting Level 4 or 5 accreditation standards, see §37-17-12.

§ 37-7-339. Extended day and school year programs; funding; authority to adopt orders, policies, rules and regulations; goal.

  1. The school board of any local school district, in its discretion, may provide extended day and extended school year programs for kindergarten or compulsory-school-age students, or both, and may expend any funds for these purposes which are available from sources other than the adequate education program. It is not the intent of the Legislature, in enacting this section, to interfere with the Headstart program. School boards, in their discretion, may charge participants a reasonable fee for such programs.
  2. The school board of any school district may adopt any orders, policies, rules or regulations with respect to instruction within that school district for which no specific provision has been made by general law and which are not inconsistent with the Mississippi Constitution of 1890, the Mississippi Code of 1972, or any order, policy, rule or regulation of the State Board of Education; those school boards also may alter, modify and repeal any orders, policies, rules or regulations enacted under this subsection. Any such program pertaining to reading must further the goal that Mississippi students will demonstrate a growing proficiency in reading and will reach or exceed the national average within the next decade.

HISTORY: Laws, 1998, ch. 497, § 2; reenacted and amended, Laws, 2002, ch. 332, § 1; reenacted and amended, Laws, 2002, ch. 611, § 1, eff from and after July 1, 2002.

Joint Legislative Committee Note —

Section 1 of ch. 332, Laws of 2002, effective from and after June 30, 2002 (approved March 18, 2002), amended this section. Section 1 of ch. 611, Laws of 2002, effective July 1, 2002 (approved April 25, 2002), also amended this section. As set out above, this section reflects the language of Section 1 of ch. 611, Laws of 2002, pursuant to Section 1-3-79 which provides that whenever the same section of law is amended by different bills during the same legislative session the amendment with the latest effective date shall supersede all other amendments to the same section taking effect on an earlier date.

Amendment Notes —

The first 2002 amendment (ch. 332) repealed former (3), which contained a repealer for the section.

The second 2002 amendment (ch. 611) rewrote the first sentence in (1); and repealed former (3), which contained a repealer for the section.

Cross References —

Headstart early childhood education programs, see §§37-21-1 through37-21-9.

§ 37-7-341. Expenditure of funds for student field trips to nonprofit museums.

The school board of a local school district may expend funds from any available sources for the purpose of defraying the cost of student field trips to public or private nonprofit museums, including the cost of admission to such museums.

HISTORY: Laws, 2002, ch. 611, § 2, eff from and after July 1, 2002.

§ 37-7-342. Use of service or assistance dogs trained to alert to symptoms of illness or disability authorized in all district facilities.

  1. The Legislature recognizes the necessity of school districts to provide reasonable accommodations to students and licensed employees of a school district who are diagnosed with debilitating illnesses or disabilities, including, but not limited to, diabetes and epilepsy.
  2. The school board of any school district shall authorize the use, in all district facilities and property, of service or assistance dogs which have been specifically trained to alert people of symptoms or conditions resulting from a debilitating illness or disability that threaten their health.
  3. In providing accommodations for students, the parent of a child with such illness or disability, the teacher or teachers of the student and the appropriate school administrator shall meet and develop a written 504 Plan consistent with the provisions of Chapter 23, Title 37, Mississippi Code of 1972, that would permit the use of service dogs in the school facility. Also, in providing accommodations for students, the teacher or teachers of the student and the appropriate school administrator shall develop a plan designed to educate other students of the appropriate behavior in the presence of such dogs, as well as the proper handling of such dogs in the presence of those students who may have an allergic reaction to the dog and the reasonable care to be taken in efforts to prevent contact by students who are allergic with such dogs.

HISTORY: Laws, 2012, ch. 548, § 4, eff from and after July 1, 2012; brought forward without change, Laws, 2018, ch. 341, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2018.

Amendment Notes —

The 2018 amendment brought the section forward without change.

§ 37-7-343. Authority to enter into contracts for training and professional development of district employees.

The school board of a local school district may enter into contracts or agreements with persons or entities, public or private, to provide training or professional development activities, or both, for employees of the district.

HISTORY: Laws, 2002, ch. 611, § 3, eff from and after July 1, 2002.

§ 37-7-345. Authorization to establish regional educational service agency; agency to be organized as nonprofit tax exempt corporation; operation and management by public advisory board; board of directors; Executive Director; powers and responsibilities of educational service agency.

  1. A regional educational service agency (ESA) may be established in a region of the state when twelve (12) or more school districts determine there are benefits and services that can be derived from the collective and collaborative formation of an agency for the purpose of pooling and leveraging resources for the common benefit of students, teachers, administrators and taxpayers. An educational service agency shall be incorporated in the State of Mississippi and organized under the laws of the State of Mississippi as a nonprofit corporation. The educational service agency shall obtain 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue Service.
  2. The operation and management of the educational service agency shall be the responsibility of a public advisory board composed of the superintendents of schools or their designees from each participating school district.
  3. A board of directors shall be elected on an annual basis from the advisory board to oversee the day-to-day operations of the agency.
  4. The executive board shall hire an executive director to serve as the executive agent of the board of the regional educational service agency.
  5. The board of directors of a regional educational service agency shall have the authority to establish policies for the regional educational service to determine the programs and services to be provided, to employ staff, to prepare and expend the budget, to provide for financing programs and projects of the regional educational service agency, and to annually evaluate the performance of the agency. The board may purchase, hold, encumber and dispose of real property, in the name of the agency, for use as its office or for any educational service provided by the agency.
  6. The educational service agency is authorized and empowered to: develop, manage and provide support services and/or programs as determined by the needs of the local school district. Educational service agencies (ESAs) shall:
    1. Act primarily as service agencies in providing services and/or programs as identified and requested by member school districts (services may include, but are not limited to, professional development, instructional materials, educational technology, curriculum development and alternative educational programs);
    2. Provide for economy, efficiency and cost effectiveness in the cooperative delivery and purchase or lease of educational services, materials and products (services may include, but are not limited to, purchasing cooperatives, insurance cooperatives, business manager services, auditing and accounting services, school safety/risk prevention, and data processing and student records);
    3. Provide administrative services (services may include, but are not limited to, communications/public information, employee background checks, grants management, printing/publications and internships);
    4. Provide educational services through leadership, research and development in elementary and secondary education;
    5. Act in a cooperative and supportive role, including contracting, with the Mississippi Department of Education, Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning, Mississippi Community Colleges and other state educational organizations in the development and implementation of long-range plans, strategies and goals for the enhancement of educational opportunities in elementary and secondary education; and
    6. Serve, when appropriate and as funds become available, as a repository, clearinghouse and administrator of federal, state, local and pr