Community News

Community News


January, February and March 2021


Notice is hereby given that the Neshoba County Board of Supervisors will hold its regular meetings for the months of January, February and March 2021 as follows:

      Monday                 January 4, 2021            9:00 AM

       Tuesday                 January 19, 2021         9:00 AM

       Monday                 February 1, 2021        9:00 AM

       Tuesday                 February 16, 2021      9:00 AM

       Monday                 March 1, 2021            9:00 AM

       Monday                 March 15, 2021          9:00 AM



All Board Meetings are held at the Neshoba County Courthouse in the Board of Supervisors meeting room.  Any special meetings will be posted on the Neshoba County Courthouse bulletin board and published on the Neshoba County website at at least five (5) days prior to the meeting.            


Open Arms Food

Meal Ministry

During the pandemic, Open Arms Food-Meal Ministry is providing bags of food to the community on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month from 3:45 PM UNTIL 5:15 THIS IS A NEW DISTRIBUTION TIME BECAUSE OF REDUCE DAYLIGHT HOURS. They are located at 239 Railroad Ave. For more information call 601-663-8505. Next Dates will be March 9th & 23rd. Please remember new hours of 3:45 pm-5:15 pm.

Governor Tate Reeves has announced the extension of a mask mandate covering encompassing nearly all of the state’s 82 counties. 

The order, which was set to expire will now run through March 3rd at 5:00 PM. The previous iteration of the order included 78 counties with Adams, Jefferson, Lawrence, Quitman and Wilkinson counties being removed from the list which now includes: 

Alcorn, Amite, Attala, Benton, Bolivar, Calhoun, Carroll, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Clarke, Claiborne, Clay, Coahoma, Copiah, Covington, DeSoto, Forrest, Franklin, George, Greene, Grenada, Hancock, Harrison, Hinds, Holmes, Humphreys, Itawamba, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson Davis, Jones, Kemper, Lafayette, Lamar, Lauderdale, Leake, Lee, Leflore, Lincoln, Lowndes, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Monroe, Montgomery, Neshoba, Newton, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Panola, Pearl River, Perry, Pike, Pontotoc, Prentiss, Rankin, Scott, Simpson, Smith, Stone, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tate, Tippah, Tishomingo, Tunica, Union, Walthall, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Webster, Winston, Yalobusha and Yazoo Counties.

“It is important that we continue to take this virus seriously.  We are working on getting Mississippians vaccinated, but continue to social distance, keep gatherings small and wear your mask,” Governor Reeves said in a statement. 

Public health guidance continues to urge all Mississippians, regardless of location, to wear a mask while in public and avoid large social gatherings. 


The new $2.2 million cafeteria at Neshoba Central High School officially opened Friday with a ribbon cutting, followed by a tour of the interior where guests got a glimpse of the numerous tables with school logos as well the more modern restaurant-style booths and high-top bistro tables.

The new 9,100 square foot facility came in $27,000 under the original bid of $2,236,500.

TerryMark Construction of Meridian was awarded the bid to construct the cafeteria, which is located directly behind the new high school. Students can walk out the back door of the high school and go inside the stand-alone facility.

The cafeteria also includes new top-tier kitchen equipment and restrooms as well as projector equipment and a drop down screen for meetings and other events.

The new facility will seat 366 students at one time, but due to Covid-19 guidelines, only up to 141 students are allowed inside at one time.

The cafeteria is part of goal five of the school district’s strategic plan: “To maintain a clean and healthy learning environment and develop a progressive, state-of-the-art campus.”

Prior to the ribbon cutting, Superintendent of Education Lundy Brantley thanked the “taxpayers of Neshoba County for this wonderful first-class facility.”

He said the school district’s goal from the beginning was to provide a very inviting setting for students, staff and the community to enjoy.

“By providing first class facilities for our students, we are showing them that we can compete with anyone in this state and to never settle for second place,” Brantley said.

School Board President Jill Byars also thanked the taxpayers.

“We would like to thank the taxpayers of Neshoba County for providing this amazing facility for our students as well as for the encouragement and interest given toward the project,” Byars said.

“Our students are of utmost importance to us and we continually strive to provide opportunities that will help them compete in a global market along with facilities that provide a positive encouraging atmosphere.”

Neshoba Central High School Principal Jason Gentry said students were divided into A and B groups, which alternate weekly to dine in the cafeteria or pick up a boxed lunch to eat in a classroom.

“We have four different lunch blocks,” he said. “We have hot meals for students to eat in the cafeteria on their designated weeks and to take to the classroom the other weeks. Students who participate in cheer, softball, basketball, jazz band and junior varsity football eat in the cafeteria daily with their coaches and director.”

Gentry said things were going really well with the cafeteria, despite the Covid-19 guidelines.

“It’s good to have all the students back in the classroom after several weeks on the hybrid schedule,” he said. “Things are ever changing but we are very tickled about our new cafeteria.”

Assistant Principal Dana McLain said it was important for all the students to have an opportunity to enjoy the cafeteria.

“This allows us to social distance with students spaced far apart but they can eat and still enjoy the new facility. The kids have taken a lot of pride in it,” she said.

Gentry agreed.

“They keep it clean,” he said. “They love the booths and the high tables.”

Dr. Brantley recognized several people just prior to the ribbon cutting including School Board President Jill Byars, Vice President Davis Fulton, Secretary Wyatt Waddell and members Jimmie Joiner and Michelle Phillips.

Mike Taylor, president and principal architect, and Ben Kavalsky, project architect, both from Pryor and Morrow Architects of Columbus, were present for the ribbon cutting.

Mark Carter of TerryMark Construction of Meridian was also in attendance.

Dr. Brantley also recognized Neshoba administrators and other key personnel who worked to make the new cafeteria come to fruition.

--Story by Debbie Burt Myers

Homestead Deadline


Neshoba Central Elementary School releases honor rolls


Neshoba Central Elementary School has released the names of those students who achieved highest honors and honor roll for the second nine weeks.

Named to the highest honors list were:

Kindergarten: Cora Alexander, Tatum Butler, Ryker Davis, Ember Day, Ketcher Harrington, Roderick Jones, John Lewis, Aiden McCarty, Leighton McIlwain, Haley Melton, Harley Moulds, Millie Patterson, Sarah Spears, Hoyt Stepp, Eli Stokes, Jase Stroud, Asher Warren, Parker White, Connor Graham-Sanders,

Justin Hobson, Ashlynn King, Avaclaire McDonald, Chloe McGee, Makenzie McVay, Zayden Moncriease, Hayden Stovall, Lakelyn Boler, Jesse Bond, Chloe Brown, Kaliyah Brown, Colsten Gill, Carrie Lewis, Khloe Lilly, Liam Mowdy, Carsyn Reese, Owen Roberston, Parker Savell, Jazelle Bell, Paislee Elrod, Noe’ Euyoque, Parker Kilpatrick, Jeston Savage, Harper Stovall, Noah Sullivan,

Ethan Adams, Jensyn Bell, Christopher Farmer, Addilyn Hunter, Kase Kilgore, Katherine Lofton, Peyton Turner, Kysyn Williams, Grace Alford, Mercy Alford, Zoey Boler, Jase Giles, Maci McCullar, Eliana Rangel, Phillip Soriano, Herman Young, Zander Abel, Cordae Allen, Blaze Barlow, Kaelyn Boyette, Ruby Moore, Ella Coleman, Jasper Commer, Carsyn Cremeen, Shelby Cumberland,

Mariah Foster, Zaliyah Gladney, Izabella Goforth, Grace-Dior Holmes, Kai Jones, Madalynn King, Nalasia Kirkland, Levi Long, Izley Bell, Jennings Darbonne, Ryleigh Denton, Cameron Gates, Aston Gibbons, Journey Jones, Joshua Lepard, Heidi May, Lainey McCrory, James Pinter, Kara Robinson, Brylee Sciple, A’Nyliah Seales, Trace Seward, Jontyson Tubby, Carson Bounds,

Azie Cumberland, Emerson Estes, Bentley Gilmer, Avery Goldman, Anna Hancock, Harper Hillman, Cornellius Jackson, Charlie Killen, Griffin Mars, Callie McCombs, Charli McCormick, Margaret Morrow, Miles Owen, Kellan Posey, Colson Rushing, Mary Claire Smith, Maddie Blackburn, Kynlee Bryan, Benson Fortenberry, Lizzy Goforth, Jaxon Gusman, Azlee Hardy, Lathan Hoskins, Hadleigh Hughes, Remington Ivy, Kolton Johnson, William Madison,

Kaiden Manning, Benjamin Thames, Landen Tucker, Hunter Clark, Elin Cumberland, Noble Davis, Braysten Donald, Jaycelynn Donald, Avery King, Alanna McDonald, Alayah McMillian, Annzlee Moore, Caleb Pullen and Emma-Leigh Savell.

First Grade: Caiden Wilson, John Withers, Braxton Anderson, Jackson Eakes, Jamie Fortenberry, Jordee Jackson, Eliza Simmons, Linsford Baker, Emma Henley, Serenity Henson, Easton Holmes, Carter Johnson, Aarav Marwaha, Eva McGee, Keaton Spears, Emery Vance, Ricker Warren, Madeline Breland, Emery Lee Comans, Luke Howell, Chase Jackson, Keller King, Josiah May, Anna Pike,

Adleigh Sanderson, John Schoolar, Michael Sims, Kadence Smith, Tinslie Turner, Ayda Alexander, Addie Burks, Hallie Cockrell, Bracie Hancock, Huck Joiner, Mykah Kilgore, Nicholaus Miles, Slade Myers, Lexi Pope, Caroline Rouse, Kaiser Rushing, Parks Sansing, Daniel Skipper, Micah Skipper, Baylor Smith, Ja’Marion Thompson, Charles Willis, Hadleigh McBrayer, Leia McCown, Mason Belk, Kaylee Billie, Houston Cotton, Robert Cox, Arabella Harris, Sierra Howard,

 Skyler Howe, Ava Tadlock, Taloa Thompson, Jase Boswell, Elaina Brekeen, Caleb Griffin, Ka’Niya McCarty, Ty McGee, Sadie Ramirez, Payden Smart, Kirkland Spivey, Kade White, Falicity Williamson, Emily Gibson, Braxton Kessinger, Sidney King, Nyla Naylor, Za’Niyah Nowell, Hadli Peters, Laken Shaffer, Marin Williams, Deacon Edwards, Johnathan Hopson, Ali King, Savanna Klootwyk, KaVonte McCarty, Mason McGee and River VanNortwick.

Second Grade: Paisley Bozeman, Dalia Chapman, William Cumberland, Ava Garrett, Trinity Gray, Chance Jackson, Addylynn Massey, Mason McFee, Gannon Perry, Christopher Savell, Keysen Beamon, Rebel Phillips, Amelia Soriano, Katie Tucker, Roxie Clark, Gracelyn Davis, Cayleigh Gates, Dalton Larson, Ryleigh Robertson, Jordyn Alford, Linnea Baker, Haven Calloway, Capalyn Manning, Eric Pope, Jett Robinson, Andrew Taylor, Jaxson Vaughn, Emily Ward,

Kooper Herrington, Christian Stokes, Lily Carsyn Barrett, Zachary Broom, Mari James, Emma Learmonth, Jaiden Lewis, Jenny Moore, Charleigh Ridout, Gregory Seward, Julie Tess, Brayden Webb, Edward Withers, Skyler Curtright, Christian Kirkland, Princess Medford, Jacob Wallace, Jacee Burnside, Trinity Hunter, Jacob McCullough, Harper White, Hallie Anderson, Selah Ben, Sutton Blackstock, Rivers Bounds, Miley Dees, Ryleigh Jenkins, Rivers Pope, Alexis Sullivan, Layton Coward, Jeb Flake, Karsyn Germany, Alyssa Higginbotham, William Nowell, Amzie Partridge and Patton Phillips.

Third Grade: Winter Lu, Jonathon Cannon, Kiersten Cotton, Tredarrion Curtis, Ella Sanderson, Rayden Avent, Blakely Barnes, David Hickman, Khylie Hunter, Cooper Baysinger, Benton James, Brayden Gunn, Hadleigh Adkins, Hallie Blackburn, Mady Morrow, Madalyn Nowell, Parker Sanderson, Tracy Singleton, Kaden Donald, Leilani Faulkner, James King, Gavin Lamb, Skylar Vance, Terriah Fowler, Hunter Flake, Maddox McBeath, Tessa-Marie Tubby, Margaret Brewer, Asher Holley, Jax Allan Lovern and Laney Snugg.

Fourth Grade: Azariah Balderas, Hoang Le, Keller King, Everitt Thompson, Kyler Alford, Hayden May, Ava Woodson, Blakely Blackburn, Jennifer Copeland, Elaina Hill, Cameron King, Mylee Schoolar, Braelyn Singleton, Logan Spears, Tate Stroud, Hadleigh Turner, Kennedy Wade, Linnie Kilpatrick, Kenley Kirkland, Caroline Mars, Lindsey McKinney, Lila Simmons, Addelyn Ward, Bricyn Boyd, Britt Cumberland, Madelyn Flake, Daniel Hicks, Rhett Lewis, Adam Mars,

Jaxon Mars, Mason Rushing, Evan Sharp, Romy Wright, Zachary Burt, Trinity Frazier, Christopher Johnson, Maddex Ferguson, Presley Knight, Bentley Savell, Alaina Burnham, Alyssa Burnham, Hunter Herrington and Eli Warren.

Fifth Grade: Camryn Hollingsworth, Mason Pope, Savannah Stokes, Leigha Bass, Samuel Burton, Jada Clemons, Elizabeth May, Isabella Cannon, Bobby Cumberland, Kaylee Hutchison, Madelyn Myers, Addy Phillips, Sayda Posey, Lily Fortenberry, Peyton Howell, Daniel Mars, Sadie Nance, Oliver Patterson,

 Kooper Smith, Madison Charlie, Jia Moore, Kanyon Tubby, Cutler White, James Brewer, Marley Eakes, Jackson Fortenberry, Kaylin Jones, Thomas Rushing, Sadie Coggins, Presley Moore, Eli Robertson, James Watkins and Taelyn Mingo.

Students named to the honor roll included:

Kindergarten: Laklynn Long, J’Kyrun Graham, Jordan Madison, Ivan Morris, Jace Pankey, Ryker Robinson, Christy Hickman, Juliahna Sistrunk, Ja’Tylan Webster, Arie Body, Karley Edwards, Kaelyn Harrington, Connor Reeves, Harley Cooper, Christian Johnson, Tianna Lyons, Maddox Miles, Mahogany Moore,

Jayden Riley, Ali Boyd, Arabella Elsey, Kenan Ladd, Ji’anna Steward, Kaiden Watson, Nicolas McKinney, Tristian Oubre, Pyper Chunn, Aalyiah Collins, Eric Horne, D’errick Lewis, Chipper Briscoe, Ruthie Donald, Jordan White, Cheyenne Dertinger, Aniya Williams, Kayden Burton, Cooper Caples, Jayden Fincher, Remington Fitzgerald and Garrett Hart.


First Grade: Mi’kela Thaggard, Andrew Wilkerson, Sophie Bigham, Jonathan Davis, Peyton Dunn, Reed Huffman, Journeigh Issac, Jaszmine Moore, Blaine Nowell, Weston Pike, Ryker Zimmerman, John Ballard, Kali Pearson, Bema Reynolds, Katalena Dixon, Aiden Drury, Ryder Stepp, Jadalyn Lyons, Allen Hancock, Jordan Ingrum, Aria Thorton, Emily Wright, Paris Chamberlin,

Kruze Clark, Devin Lamb, James Manning, Xailen McAfee, Readen Townsend, Logan Wilson, Tyra Brazzle, Brennan Hart, William Reese, Madalann Yarbrough, Ashlyn Chrest, Hayes Gordon, Mackinley Morris, Bo Parker, Sybil Ragsdale, Jayden Rosell, Mackenlie Smith, Connor Williams, Cassidy Chamblee, Ayden Cumberland, Wathiq Curry, Viktoria Klauck and Aubrie Nickey.

Second Grade: Myles Cooper, Nevaeh Fortenberry, Collins Fortune, Chad Grantham, Raven Scott, Taylee Fortenberry, Tanner Miles, Lucas Miller, Eli Winstead, Joseph Burrage, Layken Butler, David Frank, Christopher-Joe Howard, Brooklyn Malone, Kash Robertson, Alynnah Seals, Jobias Bell, Bryston Burnham,

Caroline Cumberland, Elijah Kirk-Harris, Rylee Sanders, Tushka Zimmerman, Adam Burks, Kerrigan Gully, Rylee Lashley, Iszabella Pearson, Andrew Rumery, Jaxson Taylor, McKenzie Williams, Lilly Cumberland, Anthony Holley, Posey Jackson, Lincoln Lovern, Avery Myers, Silas Taylor, James Warren, Abbie Dertinger, Hallie Downey, Envy Isaac, Addyson McCrory, Ta’kambre Pickens, Brad Purvis, Ava Tucker, Malaya Tullos, Aiden Waters, Azarae Evans,

Daxton Ladd, Zoie Pace, Kallie Pope, Elias Simmons, Merlainey York, Willa Baysinger, Jagger Gibbons, Anthony Plum, Peyton Sharp, Kenleigh Spencer, Cecil Burney, Emily Delap, Ken Fulton, Easton Graham, Aubrey Nicholson, Tristan Reeves, Jacobe Smith, Isley Washington, Addisyn Watkins, Grayson Windham and Margaret Young.

Third Grade: Julian Alford, William Babb, Mckaelyn Boyd, Princton Fortenberry, Kristina Gentry, Kloey Grayson, Ariel Hunter, Ethan McGowan, Ashley Perez, Lillian Adams, Geovanny Duell, Amhyleigh Fireplace, Monteze Johnson, Charlotte Lyon, Emma Seale, Elizabeth Spears, Layla Turner, Javier Virola,

Huntley Winstead, Hannah Apperson, Azaria Brantley, Aubry Clossom, Zachary Edwards, Karter Goss, Donvyea Henley, Makayla Plum, Elliot-Bri Warren, Robert Byars, Joseph Cumberland, John Graham, Logan Murphy, Jacob Myers, LynnKathryn Smith, Aiden Ward, Camren Wilson, Avery Chapman, Andrew Eakes, Jaidyn Hunter, Aly Jones, Allayna Mitchell, Aubree Russum, Raelyn Skinner, Justin Thrash, Mason Thrash, Elliyah Wilson, Kyliyah Wilson,

 Malia Yarbrough, Kingston Carter, John Cockrell, Elijah Jayroe, Morgan Kirkland, Sawyer Petty, Taylor Petty, Brianna Singleton, Lillian Smith, Aubree Stokes, Phoenix Cumberland, Isabella Glass, Emily Hathorn, Ryder Overby, Aldrick Rattler, Allison Sullivan, Kali Watkins, Braxton Ellingburg,

William Mars, Caisen Melton, Kensington Pope, Darby White, Hadleigh Williamson, Logan Baysinger, Miley Blair, Harper Dunn, John Jolly, J’Kaylen McWilliams, Zykira Nicks, Paxton Phillips, Bella Thrash, Joseph Ward, Amzie Eakes, Sadie Gray, Kemjaiya Johnson, Nicholas Lewis, Madelyn Smith and Zachary Stewart.

Fourth Grade: Anna Parker, Kelsey Peebles, David Steele, Xander Williams, Kadyn Boatman, Chloe Bond, Caden Howard, Trent Lilly, Isabella Murphey, Austin Stacey, Aubrie Viverette, Piper Adams, Liam Amos, Tarlayah Brescia, Aubrie Gilmer, Madilynn King, Ashton Le, Maci Monk, Kerriyahnah Smith, Hannah Townsend, Austin Ashcraft, Kolton Dunn, Jacksyn Hibbler,

Wyatt Rigdon, Destine Smiley, Braiden Woods, Rowdy Briscoe, Lucy Hantzis, Bentley Keller, Ryan Long, Shelly Lu, Joslen Wells, Brian Bennamon, Dakotah Curtis, A’Tavin Dawkins, Skye McGee, Bradley Pierce, Bentley George, Jamie McKinney, Emily Nickles, Wendell Scarbrough, Ashe Shelton, Braxton Stepp, Noora Alnaham, Raygan Gibson, Rodney Harris, Ezekiel Kirk-Harris,

 Allison Willis, Caleb Yarbrough, Benjamin Black, Keeley Blair, Salem Bounds, Lillian Chrest Robert Martin, Jerry Moore, Eli Pendleton, Noah Turk, Lauren Boler, Kaitlyn Burnside, Owen Eakes, Jaythan Griffin, Dazlynn Langford and Benjamin Williams.

Fifth Grade: Kolt Butler, Jacob Creel, Trenton Nash, Isaiah Tatum, La’Mauria Whigham, Zoie Clark, Allen Edwards, Delvin Espinoza, Aniston Garrett, Kynnedi Harrington, Kinzi Liner, Madison Melton, Antonio Mendoza, Chloe Tucker, Madissyn Westerfield, Sadie Bonds, Raeleigh Cumberland, Brady Downey,

 Suymia Foster, Harrison McGowen, Jazmyn McWilliams, Rileigh Smith, Christopher SPencer, Trenton Vowell, Jude Watkins Kyliese Winters, Zidaysia Burnside, Brody Copeland, Levi Donald, Laney Griffis, Kristen Miles, Charlie Smith, Corbin Smith, Mackenzie Stovall, Mckynli Baldwin, Eden Ben, Emma Bishop, D’Angelo Boler, Jayden Burnside, Kaleb Kirkpatrick, Kalib McKee,

William Moorehead, Lacey Rogers, Victoria Withers, Ricky Ferguson, Jayden Gusman, Jessica Puckett, Rikkya Sorrell, Randal Baugh, Easton Crapps, Sakarcyn Culberson, Alexia Depriest, Erica Ellis, Tyler Ferguson, Tessy Morales, Levi Ridout, Devlyn Shoffner, Canon Butler, John Garner, Marlee Glass, Harper Holley, Allyson Joshlin, Gideon Linkins, Brantlee McKinion, Isabelle Tess,

Zoie Avent, Ellora Briscoe, Ryder Burrage, Trinity Gambill, Madelyn Gordon, Ke’Aundre Henderson, Tessie Higginbotham, Summer Lu, Hannah Lyon, Daniel Refre, Christopher Scarbrough, Bella Warren, Ahniya Cleveland, Aubrey Edwards, Peyton Fortenberry, Ava Jones, Lundy Harper, Ava Harper, Peyton McBeath, Nathan Posey, Brock Walker, Jordan Willis and Cali Wilson.

The Mississippi State Department of Health has announced the arrival of additional doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to support on-going operations at drive-thru locations across the state through next week.

In a news release, the MSDH explained that the allotment will also allow for a modest amount of doses to be shared with community partners in a “manner that seeks to address both geographic and racial disparities.” To this point, just 15% of Mississippi’s doses have been administered to African Americans.


Today’s announcement follows Wednesday’s news that all available appointments had been filled, resulting from the expansion of eligibility to those over the age of 65 and those with underlying health conditions.

While this doesn’t mean new appointment slots have opened just yet, MSDH clarified that they “anticipate that we will have an additional drive through appointments, in more locations, the week of January 25 based on vaccine forecasted to be available at the end of next week.”

Additionally, the release explained that health officials expect a steady supply to continue to arrive.

“MSDH anticipates steady vaccine supply to support scheduled vaccine appointments at drive-through clinics, and second doses will be available for all persons who have already received a first dose. The anticipated arrival of significantly more vaccine in February is in addition to the steady, modest supply that we are currently receiving weekly,” MSDH notes.

To date, at least 77,223 Mississippians have received their first dose of the vaccine with 8,606 getting their second shot as well. After Wednesday’s confusion, Governor Tate Reeves took to Facebook last night in an effort to explain the current situation relating to outstanding doses.

Neshoba Central Elementary

Second nine weeks Rocket Award winners

Kindergarten: First row, from left, are Reid Thames, Khloe Lilly, Heidi May, Kase Kilgore and Hoyt Stepp. In back are Ali Boyd, Emma- Leigh Savell, Griffin Mars, Makenzie McVay, Carsyn Cremeen and Jeston Savage.

First Grade: First row, from left, are Chase Jackson, Logan Wilson, Eliza Simmons, Kirkland Spivey and Hadleigh McBrayer. In back are Deacon Edwards, Parks Sansing, Za’Niyah Nowell, John Withers and John Carter Ballard.

Second Grade: First row, from left, are Alanna Miera, Eli Winstead, Tristan Thompson, Hallie Downey and Elias Simmons. In back are David Frank, Zac Brown, Emily Delap, Kooper Herrington and Chance Jackson.

Third Grade: First row, from left, are Lance Ward, Parker Sanderson, Isabella Glass, Raeleigh Stovall and Makaelyn Boyd. In back are Tommy Warren, Andy Eakes, Terriah Fowler, Asher Holley and Lillian Williams.

Fourth Grade: First row, from left, are Maddex Ferguson, Enez Stumblingbear, Madi Grace King, Zach Burt and Hadleigh Thompson. In back are Jacob Copeland, Alyssa Burnham, Rhodes McCormick, Will McKinney and Bricyn Boyd.

Fifth Grade: First row, from left, are Ahniya Cleveland, Brody Copeland, Halo Young, Jayden Burnside, Savannah Stokes and Kooper Smith. In back are Madalyn Gordon, Erica Ellis, Jada Clemons, Brantlee McKinion and Cheyenne Gibson.

Second grader Charleigh Kate Ridout answers a question on her class’s new Promethean board at the direction of teacher Angie Coward, at right. Promethean boards and other new devices are now in most classrooms across the Neshoba County School District, as part of more than $1.5 million in new technology, funded mostly through the first phase of the Mississippi Connects digital learning plan.


Neshoba Central adds more than

$1.5 million in new technology


A chalkboard was a classroom staple when Neshoba Central Elementary School teacher Angie Coward began her teaching career. Now more than 21 years later, chalkboards and subsequent dry erase boards have been replaced with Promethean boards.

The interactive whiteboard allows teachers to project an image from a laptop or computer. They can also interact with the board through touch or specialized pens.

Promethean boards and other new devices are now in most classrooms across the Neshoba County School District, as part of more than $1.5 million in new technology, funded mostly through the first phase of the Mississippi Connects digital learning plan.

The Mississippi Legislature allocated $200 million for Mississippi Connects for schools statewide through two laws, the Equity in Distance Learning Act (SB 3044) and the Mississippi Pandemic Response Broadband Availability Act (HB 1788). The goal is for every student to receive the technology needed to learn at school and at home. These tools will enable students to continue making academic progress.


Districts statewide placed orders to purchase over 325,000 computer devices through the state Department of Education.

Neshoba County Superintendent of Education Lundy Brantley said the EDLA grant required a 20 percent match from the school district.

“We spent just over $200,000,” he said.

Under EDLA, Neshoba purchased 1,155 Chromebooks, 327 student laptops, 167 teacher laptops, 30 iPads, 18 MacBooks and 22 amplification systems.

Through the Broadband Availability Act, Neshoba purchased 753 internet hotspot devices.

Neshoba’s overall technology project included an additional 22 hotspot devices, 65 amplification systems, 30 student device charging carts and 80 Promethean boards made possible through Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Funds.

All those funds were made possible through the CARES Act.

Funds from other Federal Programs, such as Title 1, Part A and School Improvement, were utilized to purchase an additional 26 student device charging carts, 21 Promethean boards and 62 document cameras.

While the Neshoba County School District’s Chromebook initiative to provide one device for every student was progressing forward, the additional funding brought the initiative to fruition, Brantley said.

“One of the neat things is that our high school hardly had any Promethean boards at all,” he said. “Now, they are in line with the other two schools as far as that technology.”

Coward uses her board throughout the day in her second grade classroom.

“I love it,” she said. “I really like all the capabilities it gives the students to interact.”

Coward said the board frees up more time for instruction as it is paired with her computer and subsequent lesson plans.

 “I have power point links throughout my lesson plans, which are put on the board for student interaction. You can also pair their Chromebooks to the board for interaction.”


Amplification systems a ‘game changer’

Dr. Brantley was also excited about the addition of amplification systems.

“They are a really good addition,” he said. “Through this overall project, we were able to do some things that we didn’t anticipate doing on our own, such as the amplification systems.”

Kelly Spence, high school speech pathologist, said the amplification systems deliver highly intelligible speech from teachers to students in class and at home during distance learning.

“It improves the quality of sound for each child,” she said. “The learner outcome is better with the amplification.”

Deirdre Manning, director of federal programs for the school district, said the amplification systems have proven to be a very useful tool in the classroom, especially while under a mask mandate.

During quarantines and while the high school was on hybrid schedule last semester, most teachers delivered online instruction whether live, recorded, or via an internet-based learning system. 

Students could hear the teacher from anywhere in the classroom as opposed to the teacher providing instruction directly in front of the computer, even when teaching online through Zoom or other video-conferencing applications.

“The amplification system is needed to project the teacher’s voice clearly,” Manning said.

Coward utilizes her new amplification system daily.

“I love it in general but even more so this year because of the masks,” she said. “It’s a complete game changer. I wish I had one during all my years of teaching.”

Another new device in her second grade classroom is a document camera.

“I use it a lot,” Coward said. “It’s like a digital copy machine. It’s awesome!”


Principals laud new technology

High School Principal Jason Gentry was pleased that the district has reached its Chromebook Initiative.

“Through the efforts of many dedicated people, we are thankful to have upgraded the technology at NCHS so our students have the same opportunities and technological advances that the top high schools in our state currently possess,” he said.

“With the addition of over 700 Chromebooks with carts, we have finally reached our goal of all classrooms being equipped with devices for one-to-one student use. That, along with Promethean interactive panels that were installed in all classrooms, allowed our teachers to broaden the learning scope with interactive details that enhance and enrich the learning experiences for our students. Overall, it is our mission to promote learning experiences that will lead to successes for our students beyond high school.”

Middle School Principal Cody Killen said the increase in access to educational technology “is providing alternate ways for teachers to deliver instruction to our students.”

Killen said his school has seen a “quick rebound in the achievement gap experienced by the onset of the pandemic and access to equitable resources for all students has certainly helped our mission in making this year successful." 

Neshoba Central Elementary Principal Tiffany Plott said the new technology ensured that students in kindergarten through fifth grades have their own devices while at school.

“One of the hottest trends right now is teaching digital citizenship,” Plott said. “It’s the newest buzz word out there. Digital citizenship is where a person develops skills and knowledge to effectively use the internet and other digital technology in order to participate responsibly in the world.

“We are teaching our kids to function in a world where most everything is online. Like most of us, we do online banking, we’re ordering our groceries online these days, etc. It’s teaching them to thrive and succeed in an age where technology is the key to everything we do.”

Plott said students take pride in their own personal Chromebooks.

“They are able to personalize them, make their own screen saver, etc. They take ownership of it.  It’s good to let the kids have that kind of ownership.”


Looking to the future

Brantley said it was important for the school district to keep advancing its technology.

“Our society is technology based,” he said. “When I first came here in 2017, one of the goals was to get an ample supply of internet power and devices in the hands of kids. We have been able to do more and do it more efficiently with more devices. Of course the CARES Act money and money helped us complete the project we had been working on. We just got it completed a year earlier than expected.”

Looking to the future, Brantley said the school district has already started rotating out devices.

“If you get four years out of a device, you’ve done pretty well,” he said. “We budget every year to rotate out and continue to upgrade every chance we get. As far as number of devices, we are in really good shape.”

Despite all that, Brantley said nothing replaces great teachers “and we have great teachers. Technology is a supplement. That is a fact.”

Over the past two or three years, the school district has purchased 2,812 Chomebooks, 100 Chromebook carts, 88 teacher laptops, WinBooks Zero and iPads along with several student laptops.

Mississippi’s comprehensive statewide approach to providing technology to students was planned and implemented in a matter of weeks following approval of funding from the Mississippi Legislature.

Dr. Carey Wright, state superintendent of education, said the challenges produced by the pandemic provided the opportunity for collaboration among MDE, lawmakers, elected leaders, district leaders and state and national partners.


--Story by Debbie Burt Myers

Neshoba Central has 39students earn OSHA certification

Agriculture students earning OSHA certification include Hunter Beason, Eli Richardson, Natalie Verry, Abigail Fortune, Maleah Barrett, Wyatt Bryan and Joe Frank Byrd.

Engineering students Logan Flowers and Aaron Le recently earned OSHA certification.





Engineering seniors earning certification include Damien Clark, Zavibien Welch, Ethan Bounds, Mary Kate Moran, Logan Flowers and Caleb Belk. Not pictured are Devin McCoy and Fiona Hurtt.




Engineering juniors receiving the certification are, seated, from left, Tyler Smith, Zoie Herring, Justin Hendrix, Briauna Eubanks and Hunter Bavetta. Second row, Noah Clark, Noah Savell, Matthew Pecoraro, Tony Riddle Jr. and Grayson Fulton. In back are Cameron Hamilton, Braedon Raffield, Tony Grant, Bryceton Spencer and Kaden McDonald.

Not pictured is Omarion Stribling.

​​Thirty-nine Neshoba Central High School students earned OSHA 10 certification in recent weeks, putting them “a step ahead” when they enter the workforce, administrators said.

The certification program provides students with basic and more advanced training about common safety and health hazards on the job. Students received OSHA 10 course completion cards at the end of the training.

The certification will be a major plus, administrators said, to help students secure future jobs in a number of industrial fields.

Dr. Lundy Brantley, superintendent of education, said OSHA 10 certification “is part of our vision to graduate kids with more than a diploma because credentialing is very important to career success for these kids.

“When these students go to an employer who requires OSHA 10, that employer is saving time and money because they don’t have to be trained.”

The group included 25 engineering students and nine agriculture/FFA students. Engineering and agriculture along with digital media are three career technical programs offered at the high school.

Engineering teacher Sedera Anderson initiated the OSHA classes, which students took last semester while the school was on a hybrid schedule.

“Any kind of industry has to follow OSHA guidelines,” she said. “We did the general industry so it kind of covered all of them.”

The students, many of which aspire careers in such fields as engineering, architecture, computer science and music production, underwent at least 10 hours of online training on 14 different levels.

“They had to complete each levels and score 70 or above to move to the next,” Anderson said. “They had to pass the final exam which covered all levels with a 70 or above score.”

The levels included such things as fire hazards, ladder safety, hazardous materials, ergonomics, among others.

“It even talked about harassment in the work place,” Anderson said. “It basically covers any work hazards that may affect an industry.”

Engineering student Logan Flowers was eager to gain the certification. When asked his reasoning, he quickly replied: “Well, I’m not going to lie to you. It can increase my paycheck!”

Flowers hopes to pursue a career in computer engineering or computer science after college.

He said attaining the OSHA certification could have been difficult at times but “it was all about how much you applied yourself.”

He particularly enjoyed the class on the different types of hard hats.

Most of the other classes were things you were taught as a kid but not the hard hats, he said.

Flowers also liked the class on workplace violence, which addressed how to report harassment as well as how you would defuse an unexpected situation.

Agriculture instructor Derek Huffman said the certification is already paying off for some of his students who have part time jobs.

“From a vocational setting these days, having OSHA certification gives these students an advantage,” he said. “Some businesses in our community have already offered some of our students a pay increase.

“If they go into a vocational workforce setting after school or college, they have to meet OSHA guidelines and the certification gives them that advantage.”

High School Assistant Principal Dana McLain noted that these students would have an advantage over other uncertified job seekers with the same qualifications.

McLain said the OSHA 10 certification program was “just another example of how our district is really investing in our students. We really want them to excel once they graduate from us.”

The Neshoba County School District paid for the students to go through the program.

“The district showed that we care enough to invest in our students’ success,” she said. “Typically, the individual or the employer has to pay for this training. When our students present their cards which show their OSHA 10 certification, that gives them an advantage.”

High School Principal Jason Gentry said the certification gives the students “a leg up on the competition. We have always said when two people are neck-in-neck for a job, if one of them has this certification, it gives him or her an advantage in moving forward. That’s real important to us.”

Anderson agreed.

“It taught them that they will have a voice in any industry they work in by being knowledgeable on OSHA. They will be involved because they see the hazard each day,” she said.

The OSHA 10 program promotes workplace safety and health and makes workers more knowledgeable about workplace hazards and their rights.

It provides training on the recognition, avoidance, abatement and prevention of workplace hazards.


--Story by Debbie Burt Myers

Neshoba Ciunty School Board accepts bid to demolish old high school


A Neshoba County construction company was awarded the contract to demolish the old Neshoba Central High School, which has been vacant since 2017 when classes were moved to the new school.

The Neshoba County School Board accepted a base bid of $695,350 from McKee Construction Co. to demolish the 60,000-square-foot, two story building. An alternate bid of $53,620 was also accepted to erect new awning between the band hall and the pre-kindergarten building.

Neshoba County Superintendent Lundy Brantley said preliminary work on the overall $748,970 project would start in April. This will include such things as rerouting electricity, Internet, etc.

Asbestos removal will get under way in May, followed by the demolition starting the day after classes end for the summer.

“The old school is really in bad shape,” Brantley said. “We were pleased with the price for the demolition. We were afraid it would cost more than a million dollars.”

The original two-story building, which housed both the high school and junior high at one time, was constructed in 1963.

The newer adjacent single story building, which includes the old cafeteria, gym and agricultural facilities, will remain intact.

The completion day for the project is July 31.

Once cleared, officials plan to sod the area.

Brantley said the old high school remains sentimental to many former graduates, himself included. He also noted that the Manager of McKee Construction, Joel McKee, is also a NCHS grad.

“We are saving 1,500 brick from the original building to construct a monument to the old high school,” he said.

The monument will be similar to the school’s previous monument, featuring two blue rockets. One of the original rockets will be refurbished. The other one was stolen so a new one will be fabricated to resemble the original.

“A little piece of the old school will still be there,” Dr. Brantley said.

Brantley said a location for the monument is yet to be determined.

Other bids received for the demolition and alternate included:

J & J Contractors, Inc., $1,130,800; Roberts Builders, Inc., $1,202,000; Thrash Commercial Construction, Inc., $1,206,458; and Perry Construction Company, $1,991,600.

Neshoba Central Elementary students

recognized for perfect attendance


Neshoba Central Elementary School has announced the names of students who had perfect attendance for the second nine weeks.

Students include:

Ayda Alexander, Cora Alexander, Kylie Alford, Khloe Anthony, Rylee Atkinson, William Babb, Anistyn Baker, Blaze Barlow, Mason Belk, Brian Bennamon, Sophie Bigham, Sadie Bonds, Carson Bounds, Bricyn Boyd, Jerimah Brown, Sh’Kaislyn Brown, Cecil Burney, Adaysia Burnside, Jacee Burnside, Jayden Burnside,

Zidaysia Burnside, Canon Butler, Caillou Carey, Lillian Chrest, Roxie Clark, Delilah Cooney, Brody Copeland, Jennifer Copeland, Nicholas Cotton, Ayden Cumberland, Azie Cumberland, Britt Cumberland, Phoenix Cumberland, Ainsleigh Dennis, Rashad Deville, Dylan Donald, Ruthie Donald, Trinity Donald, Brylie Downey, Hallie Downey, Geovanny Duell, Dylan Duncan, Harper Dunn,

Peyton Dunn, Gwendolyn Edwards, Braxton Ellingburg, Erica Ellis, Misty Ferguson, Jeb Flake, Madelyn Flake, Letty Floyd, Jackson Fortenberry, Lily Fortenberry, Peyton Fortenberry, Trinity Frazier, Jagger Gibbons, Amarii Gibson, Jaxon Griffin, Jaythan Griffin, Allen Hancock, Chloe Hancock, Emily Hathorn, Bryant Henry, Serenity Henson, Kooper Herrington, Easton Holmes,

Grace-Dior Holmes, Lathan Hoskins, Stephon Houston, Reed Huffman, Victor Hunt, Khylie Hunter, James Jayroe, Ryleigh Jenkins, John Jolly, Konterius Jones, Bentley Keller, Braxton Kessinger, Kase Kilgore, Charlie Killen, Linnie Kilpatrick, Avery King, Elijah Kirk-Harris, Ezekiel Kirk-Harris, Rico Laster, Jaceyon Lewis, Nicholas Lewis, Trent Lilly, Laklynn Long, Ryan Long,

Lincoln Lovern, Shelly Lu, Summer Lu, Winter Lu, Adam Mars, Daniel Mars, Jaxon Mars, Aarav Marwaha, Hayden May, Callie McCombs, Mia McCown, Harrison McGowen, Princess Medford, Gunner Miles, Mahogany Moore, Eduard Morales, Kyson Nash, Trenton Nash, Kemper Nelson, Konner Nelson, Charlee Netherland, Kitty Norwood, Brentlee Nowell, Taylin Overton, Jace Pankey,

Rebel Phillips, Tyson Pinson, Kallie Pope, Kensington Pope, Jessica Puckett, Jaydyn Robertson, Ryleigh Robertson, Baylee Ruffin, Baylee Sanders, Madison Sanders, Hayden Savell, Emma Seale, Daniel Skipper, Allisun Smith, Baylor Smith, Corbin Smith, Lillian Smith, Zackary Smith, Mackenzie Stovall, Silas Taylor,

Haylen Thomas, Redainian Thomas, Ti’necee Thomas, Latimer Thompson, Tucker Tubby, Layla Turner, River VanNortwick, Jaxson Vaughn, Gracelyn Verry, Gabriel Walker, Eli Warren, Elliot-Bri Warren, Harley White, Harper White, Lillian Williams, Emmie Willis, Jordan Willis, Camren Wilson, Mason Windham, Eli Winstead, Madalann Yarbrough, Malia Yarbrough, Aaron Yates, Ryker Zimmerman and Tushka Zimmerman.

The annual Neshoba County Fair Association Fair stockholders meeting has been canceled due to inclement weather.

By order of the President of the Neshoba County Fair Association Board