Since its inception in 1997, state legislators have met the funding standards by the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP) only twice, underfunding education by a combined $2 billion over the past 20 years.
Protesters spoke out against the Republican-led legislature’s failure to offer the public more input on legislation and against proposals to scrap MAEP completely.
Leslie Fye, a mother of two children in the Starkville Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, was blunt about her misgivings concerning the Legislature.“I do not trust you,” the Clarion Ledger reported Leslie Fye, a mother of two in the Starkville Oktibbeha Consolidated School District, as saying to members of the legislature. “I do not trust you because I am often confused and offended by what you say about public education in Mississippi.”
Legislators’ last day to meet is April 2nd. If they do not pass reforms by then, it would be up to Governor Phil Bryant to call a special session to address the ongoing education shortfalls.The AP estimates that 300 people showed up to protest at the Mississippi State Capitol, demanding full funding for public education and transparency in proposed education-related legislation.