According to Chiquikta Fountain, national office parent coach, the purpose of the petition is to get Initiative 42 on the November 2015 ballot, which will allow Mississippians to vote for or against full educational funding in the state.
“This is just to get it on the ballot,” she said. “Right now it doesn’t matter if you are for or against it.”
Initiative 42 aims to make it mandatory that the state legislature put full funding into public education.
According to information from Better Schools Better Jobs, over the last six years, underfunding for the Mississippi Adequate Education Program has resulted in a $1.5 billion shortfall for education.
Currently the education funding comes from the general fund, which represents only 46 percent of the state’s revenue.
“I want to say again that this is just to get on it on the ballot so all Mississippians can vote on it,” said Fountain.
She said 107,000 signatures are needed although they are aiming for 200,000.
“Our deadline is Oct. 1, 2014, to get it on the 2015 ballot,” said Fountain, adding people who sign must be registered voters in the precinct where they live.
“We’ll keep at it right up until the deadline,” she said.