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In Mississippi, Education Money Gap Grows to $1.5B

DURANT, Miss. (AP) — In a state with a long history of lousy education, and a bad habit of not paying for it, nowhere is the problem more profound than in this tiny town in the middle of Mississippi.

Durant Public School teachers spend their nights on the Internet, searching for math and other problems to give their students because the school doesn’t have any up-to-date textbooks.

School leaders say they can’t afford new books or a reading coach to help raise the district’s “D” academic rating. There’s a leaky roof and crumbling ceiling tiles, no marching band and no advanced placement classes. To save money, the number of teachers and their assistants were reduced and administrators took pay cuts.