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Volume 40, No. 5 / March 2012

Legislative Update / School Law Review set April 30-May 1


everal key state lawmakers are scheduled to serve on a Legislative Panel during the Legislative Update / School Law Review at the Marriott Hotel in Downtown Jackson on May 1. With adjournment of the 2012 Mississippi Legislature set for Sunday, May 6, most of the session’s major decisions should be addressed by the time of this important annual meeting (unless the session is extended, of course). As in recent years, MSBA has lined up an Early Bird Seminar to focus on areas in which school leaders have expressed concern. The April 30 Early Bird will feature MSBA General Counsel Jim Keith, Ethics Commission Executive Director Tom Hood, MSBA Executive Director Michael W. Waldrop, and MSBA Insurance Program Manager Anissa Young in a session examining how to avoid legal exposure when serving on a school board. Atty. Keith also will explore parliamentary meeting procedures that facilitate smooth school board meetings. Those confirmed for the Legislative Panel on the next day, May 1, are House and Senate

Education Committee chairmen Rep. John Moore and Sen. Gray Tollison, along with House Appropriations Committee chairman Rep. Herb Frierson (pictured above as listed). At press time, MSBA had not yet confirmed participation by Senate Appropriations Committee chairman Sen. Eugene Clarke, also invited to serve as a panelist. The May 1 Legislative Update / School Law Review is a full day of briefings about school funding for 2012-13, the whole notion of charter schools, challenges of social media like Facebook and the day-to-day questions school leaders might have about ethics, student discipline and other matters. The registration brochure for the meeting was mailed early this month. Use it to register or register online at

A February 29 legislative committee hearing on a charter schools proposal, House Bill 1152, drew quite a number of Mississippi school leaders attending MSBA’s 40th Annual Conference (standing, far right). The measure made it out of the House Education Committee and continues to move through the legislative process.


More superintendent searches are getting underway.


Among the special recognitions at the 40th Annual Conference were the Friend of MSBA Award and the Longest Serving School Board Member Award.


See photos of the awards presentations in the MSBA Center for Board Development’s Board Honors Program. Other photos of February’s Annual Conference activities are posted to the MSBA website. Click on Conferences from the menu bar at the top of the home page, then “General Photos” or “Awards Photo Gallery.”


Amite County School Board adopts MSBA Professional Governance Standards. The district’s board members are pictured. . . . and much more!


The Update is published bimonthly as a resource for school board members and administrators throughout Mississippi. Comments and suggestions are welcomed. Michael W. Waldrop, Ph.D. Executive Director Denotris Jackson Director of Policy / Advocacy Linda Buford-Burks Director of Communications Darla J. Warren Business Manager Anissa Young, CSRM Insurance Program Manager Paul Chamblee Risk Management Specialist Jenni Owen Trainer, MSBA Center for Board Development (CBD) Rose Regina Coordinator of Workers’ Compensation

AMITE COUNTY BOARD: Congratulations to the Amite County School District Board of Trustees. Members formally adopted MSBA’s Professional Governance Standards at a recent meeting. Pictured (seated from left) James C. Copeland, Board President, Supt. Scotty H. Whittington, Board Atty. Nathaniel Armistad; (standing from left) board members James N. Burns, Monica Z. Johnson, Dr. Diane Cook and Albert White, Sr.

Some news items in this issue may have been taken in part or in whole from resources outside MSBA’s organization. Regular columns in this newsletter from outside resources include: • Technicalities, compiled from a newsletter of the same name published by State Auditor Stacey Pickering’s Office; • AG’s Opinions, from Attorney General Jim Hood’s Office; and,

• Ethics Opinions, from the Mississippi Ethics Commission - Tom Hood, Executive Director. Additionally, information in this issue about school district honors not presented by MSBA or about exemplary school district programs is likely from the districts or from the Mississippi Department of Education.

April Mills Executive Assistant Alexis Cole Marketing Representative / Receptionist Jim Keith, J.D. General Counsel John T. Mandeville Business Development / Marketing 225-953-1124 /

Mississippi School Boards Association

489 Springridge Road • P. O. Box 203 • Clinton, MS 39060 (601) 924-2001 • Fax: (601) 924-2003 • Toll Free: (888) 367-6722


The mission of the Mississippi School Boards Association is to ensure quality school board performance through advocacy, technical assistance, board development and information dissemination.


At MSBA, we are: • Honest • Promise Keepers • Membership Service Focused • Seekers of Perfection



from the State Auditor’s Office Policy References, where applicable, are in blue. An Opportunity for Businesses to Join in Support of Better School Governance and Higher Student Achievement Affiliate Members

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May a member of a school board be employed by one of the school district’s depository banks when he or she is an hourly employee who does not receive a bonus based upon bank profits? Yes. Under these circumstances, the board member will not be financially interested, directly or indirectly, in a depository contract between the school district and the bank, and no violation of Section 109 of the Mississippi Constitution or Section 25-4-105(2) of the Mississippi Code should occur. Nevertheless, the board member must recuse himself or herself from any board action which would benefit the bank, in compliance with Section 25-4-105(1). The exception provided in Section 25-4-105(4)(a) will apply under these facts. (MS Ethics Commission Advisory Opinion No. 12-001-E, dated February 3, 2012) BHA Does a family with a dwelling in two separate school districts, where the school age children spend the night at each dwelling two or more nights per week, constitute dual residency and are therefore able to choose which school district they want to attend? No. The concept of dual residency in not provided for in Section 37-15-29, and certain proof of residency must be provided for school attendance purposes. There is no statutory definition of “residence” under Section 37-15-29, but verification requirements are provided through the Mississippi Board of Education policy. Residency for school attendance purposes is generally a factual determination to be made by the school district. Should a student be found to not have primary residency in that school district, their only alternative allowed by law, would be to obtain a transfer pursuant to Section 37-15-31. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Norton, dated January 20, 2012) JBC, JBCCA, JBCD Can the in-house counsel for the school district also serve as the attorney for the school board and represent the school board at board meetings? Yes. The school attorney’s client is the school district as a whole and not the superintendent, school board, employees or other constituents of the school district with whom the school attorney is dealing. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Treadway, dated January 20, 2012) BBE, ABB

Thinking about Going Paperless?

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Can university police departments, institutional security officers and other Mississippi law enforcement officials continue to enforce Section 97-37-17 (general prohibition against possession of a firearm on educational property), notwithstanding the amendment of Section 97-37-7? Yes, but not against a holder of a firearms permit with the training endorsement as per Section 97-37-7. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Bounds, dated January 5, 2012) JCBH, JCDAE Southern Charm 888-367-6722


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Register, Get More Info at Conference Hotel: Beau Rivage Resort & Casino • 888.383.7037 General Questions: MSBA • 888.367.6722

Mortar Board Honor Award

The top award in the MSBA Center for Board Development’s Board Honors Program in the Whole Board Awards category went to the Hancock County School Board. Awards were presented during MSBA’s 40th Annual Conference in February. Above, Board President Jennifer Seal (second from left in the left photo) is pictured with MSBA officers (from left): Vice President Bobby Gault, President Miranda Beard and Secretary-Treasurer James Stubbs. Above right, Seal is pictured with other Hancock County board members.

Gavel Circle Honor Award

Recipients of MSBA’s second highest award, the Gavel Circle, are (clockwise) the DeSoto County School District, Leflore County School District, and the Carroll County School District.

Diploma Circle Honor Award

The Hollandale School District received the Diploma Circle Award.

Red Apple Attendance

Western Line School District is a multi-year recipient of the Red Apple Attendance Award.


School Boards of Merit are pictured on the next two pages, in recognition of each board having earned a total number of 100 or more MSBA-approved board training hours for the 2010-11 school year.

Aberdeen School District

Amite County School District

Harrison County School District

Humphreys County School District

Jefferson County School District


Lawrence County School District

Kemper County School District

Leake County School District

Leland School District

Natchez-Adams School District

North Panola School District

Noxubee County School District

Quitman County School District

Shaw School District

Western Line School District Supt. Larry Green, (above left photo, second from left), has earned the SuperAttendant Award every year since MSBA established the recognition, UNTIL NOW. For the 2010-11 school year, Green and DeSoto County School District Supt. Milton Kuykendall tied for the award honoring the superintendent with the highest number of MSBA training hours with the board.


Other Recognitions at MSBA’s February Annual Conference: TOP LEFT: MSBA Executive Director Michael W. Waldrop presents the prestigious Friend of MSBA award to retired superintendent Joyce McNair. McNair, executive director of the Delta Area Association for Improvement of Schools, is a longtime advocate for school board training and leadership. TOP RIGHT: Dr. Waldrop applauds Milton Carter, the Longest Serving School Board Member in Mississippi, for service to the Senatobia School District since 1964. BOTTOM RIGHT: MSBA Vice-President Bobby Gault (right) of New Albany and Charlie Floyd of Wilkinson County were recognized for having served on their school boards for more than 35 years — Gault since 1976 and Floyd since 1974.


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AABC QUARTERLY MEETING: The conclusion of the Fourth District quarterly meeting of the Administrative Assistants Board Clerks (AABC) in January provided a perfect photo opportunity for those in attendance. Pictured are (SEATED): Patricia Wescovich, Long Beach; Bonnie Hill, Hattiesburg; Denotris Jackson, MSBA Director of Policy / Advocacy; Marie Souza, Jackson County; LeeAnn Dubaz, Biloxi;
(MIDDLE ROW, STANDING): Mary Edwards, Columbia; Barbara Gaudet, Gulfport; Esther Reese, East Jasper; Jean Hauer, Long Beach; Vicky Rosetti, Biloxi; Debbie Ruemenapp, Pascagoula; Gaberilla Brown, Moss Point;
(BACK ROW, STANDING): Daria Wiley, Ocean Springs; Lynn Davis, Lamar County; Cheryl Jalanivich, Ocean Springs; Lisa Hinson, Bay Waveland; Robin Musgrove, Laurel; Nancy Hayden, Ocean Springs; Maria Beidelman, Ocean Springs; Amber Martin, Lumberton. The statewide Annual AABC Conference is set for May 1-2 at Embassy Suites in Ridgeland.



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SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER RECOGNITION WEEK: School districts across the state honored their board members in various creative ways during School Board Member Recognition Week in Mississippi — February 19-25. The photos below are of celebrations by the Humphreys County School District and the Moss Point School District, respectively.

SUPERINTENDENT MSBA has been engaged to conduct superintendent searches for the Board of Trustees of the school districts listed below. The superintendent vacancy announcement brochure and an application for each search are available on the MSBA website, Durant School District / Durant, Mississippi Application Deadline: April 6, 2012 Ocean Springs School District / Ocean Springs, Mississippi Application Deadline: April 30, 2012 Forest Municipal School District / Forest, Mississippi Application Deadline: May 4, 2012 MSBA also will be conducting a superintendent search for the Pass Christian School District Board of Trustees and will have the brochure and application online soon: Pass Christian School District / Pass Christian, Mississippi Projected Application Deadline: May 11, 2012

MSBA Board of Directors OFFICERS President Miranda Beard Laurel

DIRECTORS DISTRICT 1 (2011-13) David Duncan South Tippah

Vice President Bobby Gault New Albany

Tommy Prude Columbus

DISTRICT 3 (2011-13) Lucius Lampton South Pike Sondra Odom Pearl Etta Taplin North Pike

Steven Dodd DeSoto County

Secretary-Treasurer James Stubbs Long Beach

DISTRICT 2 (2010-12) Tommie Cardin Clinton

Immediate Past President Marian Barksdale Oxford

DISTRICT 4 (2010-12) Steve Conner Quitman

Demetric Warren Hollandale

Presidential Appointees (Serve during the President’s 1-year term) Glenda Barrett Newton County

Patricia Stennet Hancock County

William Kinard, Jr. Coahoma County

Gary Golden Pontotoc City

Marie Shepard Columbia MASBO REP. Sandy Halliwell Clinton - Ex Officio

Annie Chapman Hattiesburg

Lygunnah Bean South Panola

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2012 March-April Update  

The Mississippi School Boards Association (MSBA), which publishes a bi-monthly newsletter for school leaders, is a nonprofit organization wh...

2012 March-April Update  

The Mississippi School Boards Association (MSBA), which publishes a bi-monthly newsletter for school leaders, is a nonprofit organization wh...