Auditor says he can’t approve education program

The Republican told the House Appropriations Committee he can’t approve the Mississippi Adequate Education Program formula, as required by law, because his office has found unreliable numbers on attendance, students receiving free lunch and other items.

The MAEP formula is based partly on average daily attendance. But Pickering says different districts have different attendance policies, which means schools may get the same amount of money even when students at some schools attend for longer or shorter times than those at other schools.

Pickering says it’s possible some districts are inflating numbers for attendance or free or reduced-price lunches to get more state money.