**Story by Milken Educator Awards**
Philadelphia, Miss. — Kristien “Krissy” Long initially believed she was attending an all-school assembly to celebrate Neshoba Central Elementary’s A rating, with Interim State Superintendent of Education Dr. Raymond C. Morgigno commending the achievement. Instead she received a heartwarming surprise when she realized the gathering was also for her. Long was presented with the Milken Educator Award, a prestigious national honor recognizing exceptional educators for excellence and innovation in education. Bestowed by the Milken Family Foundation during a coast-to-coast tour, the Award includes an unrestricted $25,000 cash prize that recipients may use however they choose. Long becomes the second recipient from Mississippi this season as she joins Jennifer Hite of Pearl, who was surprised earlier today.
“Krissy Long is a beacon of inspiration for her students and illuminates a path to excellence for them through her immense dedication and creativity,” said Milken Educator Awards Vice President Stephanie Bishop, who is a 2001 Virginia Milken Educator herself. “Her inspiring instructional practices, unwavering commitment to her students, school and community, and seamless integration of real-world applications into her math and science curriculum are some of the ways she personifies the qualities of a Milken Educator. Today we celebrate her and welcome her to our national network. Congratulations, Krissy!”
Hailed as the “Oscars of Teaching,” the Awards will honor up to 75 recipients across the country in 2023-24 as part of the Milken Family Foundation’s Journey to the 3,000th Milken Educator. 2023-24 will reach $75 million in individual financial prizes spanning the length of the initiative and more than $144 million invested in the Milken Educator Award national network overall, empowering recipients to “Celebrate, Elevate, and Activate” the K-12 profession and inspiring young, capable people to pursue teaching as a career.
“The Mississippi Department of Education congratulates Kristien Long for earning this national award that recognizes her innovative approach to teaching math and science at Neshoba Central Elementary,” said Dr. Morgigno. “Her leadership, both in and outside the classroom, truly sets a standard for excellence in education.”