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BOE accepts after-school funding
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After-school programs at several Newton County schools will continue with more funding, since the Board of Education approved Superintendent Samantha Fuhrey’s recommendation to accept more than $700,000 in grants.

The BOE unanimously voted to continue a grant in the amount of $313,174 and accept a new grant for $447,392 for its 21st Century Community Learning Centers. The federal funds are for establishing or expanding community learning centers that operate during out-of-school hours.

Students in the program participate in academic enrichment and tutorial services. The program is also for students who need after-school services or remedial work.

Craig Lockhart, NCSS deputy superintendent of schools, said the Newton County School System received a federal grant in 2010 from the Georgia Department of Education to provide funds for opening 21st Century Community Learning Centers, operating as after-school programs, for a total of 175 students at three schools: West Newton Elementary, Indian Creek Middle and Newton High School.

In 2012, a new federal grant was awarded to expand 21st CCLC services to 250 additional students at Alcovy High, and Clements, Cousins, Liberty and Veterans Memorial Middle Schools, he said.

According to information from the school system, the program will address students’ needs based on data such as county growth rates, numbers of economically disadvantaged students; Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests, End-Of-Course-Tests, and Georgia High School Graduation Test scores; school discipline and juvenile court referrals; and teen pregnancy and STD rates.

School system officials also said the grant will provide counseling and instruction in life, work and study skills; and opportunities for parents to become more involved in their children’s education.