- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 2, 2015

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A new Mississippi program will provide free eye exams to every third grader who failed the state reading test last month and help those students get glasses if needed.

Multiple news outlets report 162 optometrists in 64 counties around the state are participating in the program, which will last until July 31. Parents will need a letter proving the child failed the third grade reading test when they go to the appointment.

The 50-question computerized test was administered in April. Results released last month showed that 5,600 students, or 15 percent, failed statewide.

Lt. Governor Tate Reeves and other lawmakers say it will take a community effort to reduce the failure rate, but thinks these kinds of programs are good starting points.

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