The Mississippi Education Blog recognizes that education advocacy is important in securing the best future possible for our state and is proud to honor individuals for their education advocacy efforts.
Jason Shelton is the mayor of Tupelo. He has long been outspoken in his support of Mississippi’s public education system.
A lifelong resident of the City of Tupelo and a product of the Mississippi public education system, he attended Tupelo High School, Itawamba Community College, Mississippi State University and the University of Mississippi School of Law.
Mayor Shelton speaks out publicly quite often on matters impacting public education. He recently spoke at the Initiative 42 public forum in Tupelo and at a Save Our Schools rally sponsored by the Mississippi Association of Educators.
He was nominated by an educator who wishes to remain anonymous. However she writes that she nominated Mayor Shelton because
He supports the young people of Tupelo by visiting their schools and highlighting positive things he sees in the Tupelo Public School District.
Mayor Shelton responded to questions from the Mississippi Education Blog about his advocacy. The answers that follow are his own inspirational words.
Why is public education important?
In my opinion, public education and public safety are the most important functions of our state and local governments. We focus much of our efforts on economic development and job creation, which is vital to our continued growth, but if we do not provide well qualified employees and a safe community, then our economic development efforts will be in vain. I believe that a strong public education system is the number one tool that our state has for economic development and that we are shortchanging the state’s economy if we fail to adequately fund and promote our public education system.
I believe that the future of our state and our public education system are interconnected and the success of one is dependent upon the success of the other.
What do you want others to understand about advocacy?
I think the most important thing to understand about advocacy for public education is that it should not be a political issue. It certainly isn’t a Republican or Democrat issue. Public education is an issue that touches every single American.
It is in everyone’s best interest to have a strong system of public education.
Please join the Mississippi Education Blog in thanking Mayor Shelton for his passion, commitment, and hard work for Mississippi’s public schools. Also, let’s congratulate Mayor Shelton on being recognized with this honor.
The Mississippi Education Blog recognizes individuals who are advocating for Mississippi’s public schools. Everyday Advocate will be a weekly feature that will showcase individuals who are making a difference in Mississippi’s public schools. We hope that this feature will encourage those working to move Mississippi’s public schools out of 50th place to continue their work. We also hope that this feature will inspire others and give them the confidence to step up for Mississippi’s public school students.
Complete the form below to nominate an advocate. The advocate will be asked three to four questions about their commitment to public education in Mississippi and be required to submit a photograph.