DESOTO COUNTY, MS (abc24.com) - Charter schools are once again a hot topic in Mississippi. The push to expand them in the Magnolia State is one of the hot button issues of this legislative session.
DeSoto County lawmakers haven't supported charter schools in the past, and still aren't this year. But parents say if it improves education - why not?
Lee Harris' kids attend DeSoto County schools, and she's familiar with the charter school fight. "I don't see controversy in it but I know others do believe that," she says.
The proposed law would allow charter schools in Mississippi's failing districts. The case is a little different in DeSoto County, where there are no failing schools.
Harris notes, "It could improve DeSoto County schools as well, if you raise the bar that keeps making sure that your children get the best education."
Parent E.G. Morris agrees. "Anything that will help education, better educate the students, I'm in favor of."
Opponents fear the schools would take away money and students. One proposal would allow school boards in top performing districts to approve charters.
"I think that is a good compromise," Morris says, "that is a good way to grade them."
One bill has already passed the state Senate. Another one has been debated all week in the House. Charters have more support this year, from both lawmakers and parents. .
"I'm just looking for the options so that if the test scores don't continue to improve or if we see a decline, to be able to have an option that's still publicly funded without having to result to private schools," says Harris.