Better Together Commission holds first meeting to talk JPS

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) —  The Better Together Commission met for the first time Wednesday morning at the Mississippi Museum of Art.

Commissioners dove right into the issues at hand. One of the goals of the commission is to find qualified and quality teachers.

“Good principals hire good teachers,” says Charles McClelland. “Good superintendents hire good principals. And obviously that needs fixing.”

McClelland, who also serves on the State Board of Education, was chosen as Co-Chair. He thinks interim JPS Superintendent Dr. Freddrick Murray has a handle on that.

“I don’t think we’ll have a problem getting teachers in once they understand the discipline is there, the curriculum is there, the support is there,” said McClelland.

Rosaline McCoy, President of the Jackson Council PTA, wants to see community members put to work.

“Kind of put people in different areas of the work because there’s lots of work for people and there’s plenty of us in the city that want to get it done and we just got to get it done.”

McCoy would like to see students involved as well, “That’s the first thing that comes across my mind because through all of this the adults have been so involved in the work but we still have students sitting in our seats every day. So I think that if we find a way to bring them into the work we’re doing and better engage them, that’s the first thing to do.”

Two commissioners were not at the meeting Wednesday morning. The Commission plans to meet weekly for the forseeable future. A meeting is set for Thursday, November 16 at 4:30 PM but a location has not been set.

The 15 commissioners are:

  • Dr. Ivye L. Allen
  • Claiborne Barksdale
  • Robert Blaine
  • Geraldine Chaney
  • Cheryl Coleman
  • Ronnie Crudup, Sr.
  • Kathleen Grigsby
  • Shauna Nicholson-Johnson
  • Charles McClelland
  • Paheadra Bratton Robinson
  • Yumeka Burt Rushing
  • Laurie Smith
  • Ed Sivak
  • Leland R. Speed
  • Laketia Marshall-Thomas

Find out more about each member here.

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