Enacted 2012 • Launched 2012 • Voucher
Mississippi allows children with dyslexia to receive vouchers to attend private schools if their
current public schools cannot provide programs that help reading disorders. Participating
accredited private schools must be able to provide dyslexia therapy.
Latest Stats (2012-13)
- Students participating: 42
- Schools participating: 1
- Average voucher value: $5,018
Average voucher value as a percentage of
Mississippi’s total per-student spending ($8,104)
The maximum voucher amount is equal to the “Mississippi Adequate Education Program”
base student cost, i.e., the base amount provided by the state to public schools.
Students must be in grades 1-6 and have been screened properly and diagnosed with dyslexia.
Students are eligible if they attended a public school before or a private school that “emphasizes
instruction in dyslexia intervention.” The voucher is not available to fund homeschooling,
virtual schools, or students in juvenile detention schools.
No legal challenges have been filed against the program.
Rules & Regulations
Private schools must fit within the standards for appropriate dyslexia therapy, including early intervention, and intensive high-quality instruction in reading and writing, and must be a “state accredited special purpose school.” Private schools must report their scholarship numbers to the Mississippi Department of Education by September 30 of each year, and must provide to the department all documentation about a student’s participation at least 30 days prior to receiving the first payment of the school year. Private schools must give parents an annual written report on the student’s progress, and must be located physically within Mississippi. Private school personnel have to be subject to criminal background checks, and schools must follow GAAP accounting principles, including a yearly financial audit by the State Auditor.
Public school districts are required to screen children for dyslexia in kindergarten and first grade, and do all of the following: conduct criminal background checks, administer state and district accountability tests annually to all participating students, and provide parents with a copy of test results.
Stephanie Linn | email@example.com
Application information from the Mississippi Department of Education