Jackson Public Schools administrative building Credit: Jackson Public Schools

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation will provide a $3 million grant for its work with the Jackson Public School District.

The Community Foundation of Mississippi will apply those funds over an 18-month period toward administrative support for the Better Together Commission, as well as supporting “robust communications and community engagement,” according to a release. The funds will not go to the school district directly.

“The nature of the work the commission is tasked with requires intentional and intensive relationship building and collaboration, and we are excited about the opportunity to bring our experience serving the community and connecting people to do good work,” said Community Foundation president and CEO Jane Alexander.

The 15-member Better Together Commission was announced in October 2017 as an alternative to state takeover for the school district. Gov. Phil Bryant, the City of Jackson and the Michigan-based W.K. Kellogg Foundation each appointed five members to the commission, and Kellogg will bear the cost of the evaluation.

Members are tasked with engaging the community and hiring an outside entity to conduct an evaluation of the district. The commission recently selected California-based consultant Insight Education Group to do the study and present the findings in November.

The next Better Together meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday, March 1 at the Margaret Walker Alexander Library in Jackson.

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Kayleigh Skinner joined the Mississippi Today team in January 2017 as an education and legislative reporter and advanced to a senior staff member in her four years with the company. Before joining Mississippi Today, Kayleigh worked at The Hechinger Report, Chalkbeat Tennessee, and The Commercial Appeal. She has appeared on MSNBC, NPR, and BBC Newsday Radio to discuss her reporting.