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More Mississippi School Districts are Requiring Students to Provide Proof of Residency

By Lawayne Childrey | Published 06 Aug 2012 07:42pm | comments
The Springer family just enrolled their children in the Clinton School District

As Mississippi students begin heading back to school this week, More school districts across the state are requiring them to show additional forms of identification to register.  MPB's Lawayne Childrey reports.

Over the years Clinton has gained the reputation of having a high performing school district.

"We want people to come to Clinton schools but we also want to make sure that the students that are attending our schools are paying taxes to Clinton public schools. "

That's Clinton's Assistant Superintendent Tim Martin.

"But there have been many people who have tried to give false information to have their children here. But we don't play around with that. And if those people are found to have falsified documents  the city of Clinton has passed an ordinance that is up to a thousand dollar fine or 10 days in jail for knowingly giving false information to school officials as for as residence.  

Clinton in Hinds County is west of Jackson   It is one of many school districts across the state  making it tougher for parents to register  students who live  outside the district. Many schools are requiring at least two forms of identification to prove residency. Those items include mortgage or leasing documents, utility bills even car registration forms. The requirements have received mixed reviews from Jackson parent Denise Watts and Clinton parent Jim Springer.

"If the kids are still in the school district what they need to do is boot up the computers. You shouldn't have to carry all of that paper work. Now if the someone is coming from out of town that's different."

"Oh no I think you gotta do that if not you're gonna have people coming from all over the place. And if that's true you're kinda cheating a lotta kids in this area."

Anne Foster, is the National Executive Director of Parents for Public Schools. She says she supports  the way districts are beginning to foster new enrollment strategies.

"If they are unknowingly trying to serve children who don't live there then I don't think that's a system that serves all schools and all children well. If you live in a district that's where you go to school and those funds should cover your education."

DeSoto, Madison, Clinton and Petal are just a few of the 156 Mississippi school districts requiring additional proof of residency for the current school year. Lawayne Childrey MPB News.

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The Springer family just enrolled their children in the Clinton School District


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