State educators tour troubled school districts

By The Associated Press

OKOLONA — The state’s top education officials spent Thursday touring some of Mississippi’s troubled school districts.

State Superintendent of Education Tom Burnham and members of the state Board of Education toured the Okolona School District, which was taken over by the state earlier this year. Department of Education spokesman Pete Smith says another group of board members toured schools in Tate County and North Panola, also under state control.

Burnham told WTVA-TV that he was impressed with the progress made in the Okolona School District. Mike Vinson, appointed to oversee Okolona, says a good measure of progress will be student performance on statewide tests.

The 650-student district had been plagued by accreditation violations, poor academic performance and financial problems.