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Educational Service Groups Join Forces
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Education and the quality of life for Mississippians is getting a boost through a new partnership between Mississippi State University's Extension Service and the College of Education's service division.
The joint effort is designed to provide products and services to school districts, families, children and communities that increase parental involvement and improve the quality of education in the state. Extension's partner is this project is the Center for Educational Partnership's Program for Research and Evaluation of Public Schools. PREPS works with individual member school districts to improve educational programs in the district.
Dr. Raygene Paige, Extension state program leader for family and consumer education, and Dr. Reuben Dilworth, director of the Center for Educational Partnerships, coordinate the project. Six zone coordinators were placed in districts around the state in July.
"This collaboration is a new way for Extension to deliver programs and services we already offer," Paige said. "Extension already works in several schools through 4-H programs and family and consumer education school enrichment programs. This will increase our involvement."
Dilworth said PREPS had 89 member districts throughout Mississippi last year, and expects a similar number this year. The new arrangement will allow PREPS to serve Mississippians better by working with the Extension Service.
"Our mission with PREPS is to help school districts improve," Dilworth said. "With the collaboration, we increase the amount of products and services available to school districts. We want to help introduce school districts again to the resources available to them through the Extension Service."
Zone coordinators in each of the state's six areas are all former school district superintendents. This close association with schools gives them the ability to bridge the gap between school officials and Extension agents working with teachers and schools.
PREPS will provide the six zone coordinators for the program, which the Extension Service will house and support. Extension will provide trained volunteers to tutor students, as well as packaged educational programs on various subjects to complement teachers' educational programs. PREPS will assist with organizing in-school 4-H clubs and school enrichment programs, promoting Extension educational programs and recruiting and training volunteers.
Contact: Dr. Raygene Paige, (601) 325-3032; Dr. Reuben Dilworth, (601) 325-3720