Tupelo • Although 82.8% of Mississippi third–graders passed the third grade reading gate as of early June following one of two retest opportunities, initially more than 25% did not pass the reading gate exam for promotion to third grade on the first try.

The state Board of Education announced on Thursday the approval of $3 million in grants that will be used for summer reading camps at 24 schools over the next three years to help students struggling to get on track.

School districts in Northeast Mississippi that will receive summer reading camp grants include New Albany, North Tippah, Pontotoc County, Union and Starkville-Oktibbeha school districts.

As part of the Literacy-Based Promotion Act, schools are required to provide reading intervention services to fourth–graders who were promoted due to an exemption and to students who have been held back in the third grade.

“These grants will help schools continue to provide supports for students that are struggling in the area of literacy in schools across the state,” Dr. Nathan Oakley, MDE chief academic officer, said in a recent press release.

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