Judge Approves School Settlement

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Meridian, Miss. The U.S. Justice Department says a federal judge has approved a deal with the Meridian School District.

The plan is to end alleged discriminatory disciplinary practices in which black students faced harsher punishment than whites for similar misbehavior.

The settlement was reached in March but became official Thursday.

A federal investigation claimed that black students were five times more likely to be suspended.

The agreement is separate from a lawsuit alleging there's a school to jail pipeline in Meridian that locks up students for minor infractions.