State Ed Department names interim leader

Published 10:03 pm Thursday, June 15, 2023

The Mississippi State Board of Education (SBE) has named Dr. Ray Morgigno the next interim state superintendent of education. Dr. Morgigno will assume the position on July 1, succeeding Mike Kent, who was appointed to serve as interim state superintendent of education from April 3 through June 30.

Dr. Morgigno brings nearly 30 years of experience working in public education in Mississippi as a teacher, assistant principal, principal and district superintendent. He led the Pearl Public School District for 12 years, helping the district achieve its first A-rating in 2017. The Pearl native currently serves as the executive director of the East Mississippi Center for Educational Development.

In addition to his career as an educator, Dr. Morgigno served for more than 20 years as an officer in the Mississippi Army National Guard. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Delta State University, his master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Mississippi and his doctorate in educational administration from Mississippi State University.

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“Dr. Morgigno is a lifelong educator and public servant who brings a wealth of experience in public education in Mississippi,” said Glen East SBE vice-chair. “The Board is confident he will continue the great strides Mississippi has made in public education over the past decade as we conduct the search for a permanent state superintendent.”

The SBE will continue working with the firm McPherson & Jacobson, LLC, to lead the search process. The search firm will accept applications for a permanent state superintendent of education between August 14 and October 19, 2023. During the application period, the SBE will issue a survey to educators, lawmakers, business and community leaders and other members of the public to solicit their input about the qualities and priorities they desire for the next state superintendent of education.

The SBE anticipates selecting its final candidate before the end of 2023. The SBE voted on May 18 to allow an individual who is named interim state superintendent to be eligible to apply for the permanent position.

Senate confirmation during the 2024 legislative session is required to complete the appointment process.