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The South Panola School District is a public school district based in Batesvillemarker, Mississippimarker (USAmarker).

In addition to Batesville, the district also serves the village of Popemarker, the town of Courtlandmarker, and the Panola Countymarker portion of Crowdermarker as well as rural areas in southern Panola County.


  • South Panola High School
  • Batesville Junior High School
  • Batesville Middle School
  • Batesville Intermediate School
  • Batesville Elementary School
  • Pope School


2006–07 school year

There were a total of 4,671 students enrolled in the South Panola School District during the 2006-2007 school year. The gender makeup of the district was 49% female and 51% male. The racial makeup of the district was 56.13% African American, 42.71% White, 1.03% Hispanic, and 0.13% Asian. 61.8% of the district's students were eligible to receive free lunch.

Previous school years

School Year Enrollment Gender Makeup Racial Makeup
Female Male Asian African
Hispanic Native
2005-06 4,690 49% 51% 0.15% 55.29% 1.11% 43.45%
2004-05 4,690 49% 51% 0.15% 55.29% 0.94% 43.62%
2003-04 4,665 49% 51% 0.26% 55.63% 0.84% 0.02% 43.26%
2002-03 4,592 49% 51% 0.37% 56.05% 0.81% 0.02% 42.75%

Accountability statistics

2006-07 2005-06 2004-05 2003-04 2002-03
District Accreditation Status Accredited Accredited Accredited Accredited Accredited
School Performance Classifications
Level 5 (Superior Performing) Schools 0 0 0 1 0
Level 4 (Exemplary) Schools 1 3 1 1 0
Level 3 (Successful) Schools 4 2 4 3 5
Level 2 (Under Performing) Schools 0 0 0 0 0
Level 1 (Low Performing) Schools 0 0 0 0 0
Not Assigned 1 1 1 1 1


South Panola High School is known for its impressive football tradition. As of the conclusion of the 2007 high school football season, the Tigers own the longest active winning streak in all of football at 84 consecutive victories dating back to 2003. And as of the end of the 2008 season,which they lost in the Mississippi 5A Championship Game to the Meridian Wildcats, they have the 3rd longest winning streak in high school football history at 89 games This win streak is longer than all but two others in high school football: Independence High School marker won 109 consecutive games from 2000–2007 and De La Salle High School in Concord, Californiamarker won 151 consecutive games from 1992-2003.

In addition to the Tigers 89–1 record since 2003, South Panola (sometimes referred to as "SP", or "USP", in reference to the nickname the "University of" South Panola, adorned by Jackson Clarion-Ledger sports writer Rick Cleveland) has also won 66 consecutive regular season games. Former Head Coach Ricky Woods (2002–2006) led the Tigers to a 14–1 record and a Class 5A State Runner-up finish in 2002, giving SP a 89–1 record in the past six seasons and Woods a 74–1 record at the school.

The Tigers have captured five consecutive MHSAA Class 5A State Championships (2003–2007), which is the longest streak of consecutive MHSAA State Championships since the Association began holding playoffs in 1981. Their streak of six consecutive appearances in the Championship game is also a record. SP's most recent championship victory was a 28–21 win over the Rebels of George County High School on December 7, 2007 at Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadiummarker in Jackson, Mississippimarker. This title was the Tigers' seventh, giving them more than any other MHSAA member school. The Tigers were previously tied with Weir (Miss.) High School at six. South Panola's appearance in the 2007 5A Championship game also ties them with Weir for the most ever in that category at ten (Weir has six titles in their ten appearances).

On December 5, 2008 the South Panola football streak came to an end at 89 games where they lost Meridian Wildcats to in the state championship.

South Panola Tigers 5A Championship Football Game history:

Year 5A Champion 5A Runner-up Tigers' Record Head Coach USA Today National Rank
1993 South Panola Tigers 42 Warren Central Vikings 28 15-0 Willis Wright 13th
1996 Moss Point Tigers 33 South Panola Tigers 30 14-1 Ed Stanley NR
1997 Moss Point Tigers 17 South Panola Tigers 14 14-1 Ed Stanley NR
1998 South Panola Tigers 45 Hattiesburg Tigers 17 14-1 Ed Stanley NR
2002 Wayne County War Eagles 21 South Panola Tigers 14 14-1 Ricky Woods NR
2003 South Panola Tigers 33 Oak Grove Warriors 14 15-0 Ricky Woods 9th
2004 South Panola Tigers 39 Ocean Springs Greyhounds 21 15-0 Ricky Woods 7th
2005 South Panola Tigers 52 Meridian Wildcats 14 15-0 Ricky Woods 6th
2006 South Panola Tigers 28 Meridian Wildcats 21 15-0 Ricky Woods 9th
2007 South Panola Tigers 28 George County Rebels 21 15-0 Lance Pogue 9th
2008 Meridian Wildcats 26 South Panola Tigers 20 14-1 Lance Pogue NR

Not surprisingly, South Panola's football program has produced an impressive lineage of college and professional football players. Among the most well-known are former teammates on South Panola's first championship team in 1993 and at the University of Alabamamarker, linebacker Dwayne Rudd, a former member of the NFL's Cleveland Browns and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and cornerback Deshea Townsend of the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers. The 1996 and 1997 state runner-up teams featured quarterback Josh Bright, who went on to lead Delta State to the Division II national championship in 2000 and was also honored that same year with the Conerly Trophy which is given to the best college football player in Mississippi. Peria Jerry, a defensive tackle for Ole Miss was selected as an All American by the AP and is expected to be drafted in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft. Derek Pegues, who was a two-time First Team All-State honoree (by the Jackson Clarion-Ledger) as South Panola's Quarterback from 2003–2004 is currently a starting Defensive Back for Mississippi State Universitymarker of the Southeastern Conference; he was an All-SEC selection in 2007 (Second-Team defense). Several of Pegues' teammates are also competing in the SEC, including Demario Bobo (DB, Sr., Mississippi Statemarker), brothers Peria and John Jerry (DL & OL, Jr. & So., respectively, Ole Missmarker), Jamarca Sanford (DB, Jr., Ole Missmarker), Chris Strong (LB, Fr., Ole Missmarker) and Jeramie Griffin (RB, Fr., Alabamamarker). Former Ole Missmarker standouts such as LB Eddie Strong and DB Toward Sanford also attended SP.The South Panola High School Varsity Cheerleaders were ranked sixth in the nation in the Super Varsity division at the 2007 UCA Nationals in Orlando, Florida. South Panola Junior High School Cheerleaders were ranked fifth in the nation in the large division at the 2007 UCA Nationals in Orlando, Florida.

More recently, the girl's fastpitch softball team won the 2006–2007 state championship by defeating Oak Grove in a 2/3 set. This marked the first time the South Panola softball team won the state championship. The Lady Tigers repeated as state fast-pitch softball champions in 2008. Star pitcher, Whitney Kihnl, was named the state's Miss Softball both years by The Clarion Ledger.

Batesville Junior High's seventh and eighth football teams were undefeated for the 2006–2007 school year.

See also


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