Community school model bill advances

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Community school model bill advances

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Bob Andres/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
State Sen. Vincent Fort, D-Atlanta, sponsored Senate Bill 30, a bill that creates a community school pilot program. The House Education Committee approved the bill 14-2 Monday. BOB ANDRES / BANDRES@AJC.COM

The House Education Committee voted 14-2 Monday to approve a bill that creates a plan for how to use grant money in at-risk schools.

Senate Bill 30 outlines a pilot program that would bring faith-based groups, businesses and philanthropies together to provide food, tutoring and medical services to improve the educational environments of struggling schools. Sen. Vincent Fort, D-Atlanta, minority whip and Atlanta mayoral candidate, presented his bill to the House Education Committee, telling them "wraparound services are critical."

“The community school model has as its core the idea that public schools, whether it be a charter or regular public school, make partnerships with community organizations,” said Fort.

A critical element in the legislation is the phrase, “If appropriations are available...” So far, this bill has not been funded, but Fort told the committee he was exploring possibilities. 

The bill passed the Senate by a vote of 50-1 on March 3. Its next step will be to come before the House for a full vote.

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