The New York State Education Department has announced Rochester will receive $7.6 million dollars to create community schools in the Rochester City School District, and $9,387,466 will go to the Finger Lakes region as a whole.
New York City and the Western New York region will receive $28,491,241 and $16,319,633 of the funds, the largest amounts, respectively, and Central New York, which includes the Syracuse area, will receive $11,749,248 of the funds.
According to NYSED officials, school districts throughout the state will receive the funds as part of $100 million Gov. Andrew Cuomo set aside for funding the schools in the 2016-17 state budget.
New State Board of Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa said the funds will be used to convert struggling schools into community schools which support connections between schools and community organizations that offer enrichment or social and health services; and encourage the use of school sites as community resources.
“We have to serve the whole child, and schools cannot do it alone,” Rosa stated. “As a former community school principal, I know students at these schools are healthier, have improved attendance, and fewer social and emotional problems that interfere with the classroom’s focus. That’s critical for student success, and these funds will help to remove obstacles to students’ education.”
NYSED said each of the 225 school districts must set the funds for the schools aside to support a strategy designed to transform struggling schools into community hubs that deliver “co-located or school-linked academic, health, mental health, nutrition, counseling, legal and/or other services to students and their families to support costs incurred to maximize students’ academic achievement.”
According to officials, the organization has allocated the funds based upon which districts have the most struggling schools, or schools that are currently in receivership status.
Visit http://www.p12.nysed.gov/sss/ for a full district-by-district breakdown of the grants.