Toppings news this week:

  • The Department of Health announced that it will close six of its nine public health district offices across the state by June 30. The agency is reorganizing after a $12 million budget cut by the Legislature.
  • Two Democratic lawmakers are suing the state after Gov. Phil Bryant’s mid-year budget cuts to public schools. The lawsuit, filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center on behalf of Rep. Bryant Clark and Sen. John Horhn, says the nearly $20 million cuts to school districts violates the state constitution.
  • Mississippi third-graders passed their literacy test at a record rate. The Department of Education announced Thursday that 92 percent of third-graders passed the reading test they have to take to be promoted to the fourth grade. Last year’s pass rate for first-time test takers was 87 percent.

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