Two new Pre-k classes coming to Lamar Co. elementary schools

LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The Lamar County School District will have two new Pre-k classes, thanks to extra federal funding.

According to Lamar County Superintendent Tess Smith, the district receives title funding every year for things like tutoring and bringing in programs.

Smith said they expected a decrease in funds for the upcoming school year, but actually received an increase.

"We immediately took the money off the top and created two new Pre-k programs," Smith said.

The money will also fund two new Pre-k teacher positions.

"One teacher will work at Oak Grove Primary, and another will work at Longleaf," Smith said.

Smith said research shows that getting students in a classroom setting before kindergarten has long-term benefits.

"You set them up for a lifetime of learning," Smith said.

According to Smith, the Pre-k teacher positions are still open, and the district is actively seeking to fill them before the school year starts.

"If you know any good Pre-k teachers send them our way," Smith said.

Smith hopes that in the next few years the district will be able to track Pre-k student success and see if the programs have a positive impact on the student's state testing and third grade reading gate scores.