MPS superintendent talks growth, improvement in State of the Schools address

Montgomery Public Schools Superintendent Melvin Brown talked about the achievements and challenges that MPS has had over the past year.
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 10:01 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 19, 2023 at 10:16 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Montgomery Public Schools Superintendent Melvin Brown addressed parents and community members in a State of the Schools speech Tuesday night at Park Crossing High School.

Brown first mentioned the growth that the district has seen in his first year.

“In the past year, our students have shown minor growth on standardized tests. We don’t talk about that,” Brown said. “But we know we have a great deal of work to do in this arena, and we accept that challenge.”

Standardized tests were not the only improvements in the district. MPS increased their college and career readiness by 7% from 2022 to 2023, increased science proficiency by 10%, plus they added 17 STEM labs in elementary schools and 50 new teaching units of music and art.

The superintendent mentioned there are still some challenges that need to be addressed, emphasizing student attendance.

“We need our kids in school. Every day, all day,” Brown said in his speech.

The district has also faced a steep enrollment decline since 2016, leaving some schools with not many students on their rosters. The superintendent hinted there may be some consolidations and closings discussed in the future.

Brown added there are initiatives that MPS is taking to address the enrollment issues, starting with initiatives that can recruit and retain students.

“If we create programs in the best way to recruit kids to want to come to the district, then they will come. But those programs have to exist for all kids,” Brown said.

Brown said he is optimistic of the district’s potential to transform students into productive adults, but is reminding the community their futures also depend on their involvement in students’ lives.

“There’s more with MPS,” he said, “And I implore everyone in our community to understand that, to support that, and to be part of that.”

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