The Mississippi Link NewswireThe Mississippi Link Publisher Jackie Hampton (center) accepts the Superintendent’s Bowtie Plaque award from Cedrick Gray, JPS superintendent and Beneta Burt, JPS School Board president, June 2. PHOTO BY DIAMOND WILLIAMS
Jackson Public School District held a Media Appreciation Breakfast at 8:30 a.m. June 2, to recognize area media organizations for supporting scholars, teachers and administrative staff in the district.
Jackson Public School administrative leaders from various departments were present along with media representatives from television stations WJTV, WLBT/Fox 40, WAPT and newspaper representatives from The Mississippi Link, Outfront and The Jackson Free Press.
“JPS represents huge demographics of viewers and readers,” said Sherwin Johnson, executive director of Public and Media Relations at JPS. “We use several media platforms to reach our stakeholders; however, we need your support to deliver our message, and we rely on media to get our message out.” Johnson said communications play a great role in parent and school involvement and the media serves as a bridge to educate, inform and connect the district to the community it serves.
Beneta Burt, president of JPS’ Board of Trustees, said she understands the role of the media and that JPS will be as transparent as possible in order to inform the community it serves. She acknowledged her understanding that the role of journalists is to make certain JPS is a good steward of tax dollars.
Prior to presenting media awards, Thea Faulkner, director of Partners in Education, highlighted some of the summer programs. She focused on the summer feeding program that’s in its 25th year of providing nutritious meals during the summer. The program runs at various schools from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., June 5 – July 15. Also highlighted was a summer reading parent orientation set for 9:30-11:30 a.m. June 11 at the Mississippi Children’s Museum, 2145 Museum Road.
Joy Redmond of WLBT/Fox 40 was awarded the Superintendent’s Bowtie Certificate for covering such events as JPS Job Fair, MLK Oratorical Contest, Teacher and Parent of the Year and other events.
Addie Ware of WAPT – Channel 16 was also given the Superintendent’s Bowtie Certificate for extensive coverage on such events as the first day of school, athletic events, Teacher and Parent of the Year and the annual wellness walk.
Leslie Nash of WJTV – Channel 12 received the Superintendent’s Bowtie Plaque for spotlighting several positive stories on the station’s “What’s Working” segment to include such events as Murrah Debate Team Champions, 30-Plus Club (students scoring over 30 on the ACT), Creativity Kitchen and for spotlighting a Callaway football student who is a tap dancer and a football player.
Alice Tisdale of The Jackson Advocate, though not present, was recognized for a long history of highlighting positive stories regarding teachers and scholars of JPS.
Tameka Garrett and Diamond Williams of Outfront received the Superintendent’s Bowtie Certificate for generously providing space to publicize positive and important events of interest to JPS stakeholders.
Sierra Mannie of The Jackson Free Press also received the Superintendent’s Bowtie Certificate for spotlighting such events as Teacher, Parent and Administrator of the Year, Academic Success for Third Grade Testing and other positive events that have taken place in JPS.
The final award was given to The Mississippi Link in recognition of excellence in print journalism. Faulkner, in presenting the Superintendent’s Bowtie Plaque to Jackie Hampton, Mississippi Link publisher said, “For the last several years, The Mississippi Link has provided several pages of weekly space to JPS to tell its story. We are grateful that you have allowed us to share hundreds of positive stories, recognitions, events and activities taking place in the district. This newspaper donated nearly 30,000 special edition publications to students and teachers during Black History Month. They have also donated space for special announcements such as online registration, editorials by the superintendent, summer reading, and much, much, more.”
Hampton credits Mississippi Link editor Shanderia Posey and Online editor Lonnie Ross for doing an excellent job in keeping up with what is going on in Jackson Public Schools as well as education in general.
Closing remarks were made by Supt. Cedrick Gray. He thanked the media for keeping JPS honest and transparent and for being fair and balanced. He said in order for us to thrive as a community we must work together. As the song goes, Gray said, “I need you, you need me, we are all a part of a big family.”