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Dr. Taylor's Blog - On a Positive Note...

Welcome Back!

As usual, the summer has flown by, and we are ready and excited to begin the 2013-14 school year!

As I enter my third year with the Meridian Public School District and reflect back over my short time here, I can’t help but be excited about the progress we have made these past two years.

Since 2011, MPSD has:
-Implemented three Small Learning Communities at Meridian High School – Health, Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA), and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)
-Increased our Pre-K by two classrooms allowing us to serve 250 students in a total of 13 classrooms
-Expanded our Curriculum and Instruction Department to provide more support to teachers
-Added to our Teacher Incentive Program
-Expanded the District Police Department from one Security Resource Officer to five and ten Security Guards
-Generated over $4 million in grants from the Phil Hardin Foundation and SWIFT
-Implemented an in-house assessment system that allows us to track our progress including our student’s growth
-Strengthened our relationships with the community
-Created a ten year capital improvement plan that includes additional classroom space and increasing handicap accessibility
-Upgraded our bus fleet

There are also some exciting changes taking place in the Meridian Public School District, and I know that we will continue taking positive strides daily with your help and support.

I am very excited to fully implement the Positive Behavior Interventions and Support (PBIS) program in the schools this year. The implementation began this past school year, but it will be in full force at each school this year. The teachers and administrators have been thoroughly trained, and I know that this program will be in the best interest of our students, parents, staff, and community.

Our District’s four main goals, as set forth by the MPSD Board of Trustees, are:
-Maintain safe and orderly schools,
-All schools will be rated ‘C’ or better by the 2015-16 school year,
-Our graduation rate will be at 85% or better by the 2015-16 school year, and
-The District will maintain a minimum fund balance as required by the State of Mississippi.

All of these great things could not take place without our wonderful staff, students, parents, and community support.

The Administrative Team that will be leading the way for the 2013-14 school year is as follows:

Superintendent – Dr. Alvin Taylor

Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction – Robin Miles

Assistant Superintendent of Student Services – Dr. Amy Carter

Principals:
Carver Middle – Tiffany Plott
Crestwood Elementary – Kimberly Kendrick
Magnolia Middle – Angela McQuarley
Meridian High – Victor Hubbard
Northwest Middle – Jackie McFarland
Oakland Heights Elementary– Barbara Young
Parkview Elementary– Rosalind Operton
Poplar Springs Elementary - LaVonda Germany
T.J. Harris Lower Elementary – LaSonja Roberts
T.J. Harris Upper Elementary – Shannon Miller
West Hills Elementary– Candi Robertson

Assistant Principals:
Carver Middle – Victor Lucas
Magnolia Middle – Marsha Smith
Meridian High – Rufus Wright, Felicia Ruffin, Shevonda Truman, Shernise Wilson, and Shirley Mosley
Northwest Middle – Justus Booth

School Directors:
Marion Park Alternative School – Beverly Pennington
Ross Collins Career and Technical Center – Rob Smith

School Assistant Directors:
Marion Park- Theresa Chisolm
Ross Collins – Mary Swindell

Other Administration:
Central Operations and Warehouse Executive Director – Archie Scarbrough
Chief Fiscal Officer – Rebecca Stevens
Chief of Security- Ricardo Clayton
Federal Programs Director- Kelli Speed
Food Services Director- Donna Freyaldenhoven
Human Resources Director – Terry Moore
Office of Assessment Director – Janet Fortner
Office of Exceptional Child Education Director – Laquita Moore
Public Relations Director – Elizabeth McDonald
Technology Director – Tim Boutwell
Transportation Director – Jayson Chisolm

Lead Teachers:
Crestwood Elementary – Dana Bell
T.J. Harris Lower Elementary – Debbie Harris
T.J. Harris Upper Elementary – Carpia Lewis
Oakland Heights Elementary – Brooke Knight
Parkview Elementary – Holly Speed
Poplar Springs Elementary – Clair Huff
West Hills Elementary – Sheila Radcliffe

I am also excited to introduce to you our new Instructional Specialists. These individuals have a proven track record in the classroom, and they will be working closely with our teachers by providing in-house training and support. Our Instructional Specialists are as follows:

Deidre Bland – Drop-Out Prevention
Jennifer Dupont - Elementary Math
Susan Hester – Secondary Language Arts
Jason Kidd – Secondary Math
Sharon Wilson - Elementary Language Arts
Mary Swindell – Science

I am looking forward to another fantastic school year! Thank you again for all of your support, and please continue to Believe in Blue!

Sincerely,
Dr. Taylor

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1019 25th Ave | Meridian, MS 39301 | PH: 601-483-6271