“These schools show how a community can come together to not only build a state-of-the-art facility, but to invest in its children and transform its workforce,” Governor Glenn Youngkin said. “And thanks to the bipartisan coalition that unanimously pushed these bills forward, we are delivering on our commitment to support vibrant 21st century learning environments across the Commonwealth. This is what happens when we put our students first; we do it together.
HB 563 and SB 473, the School Building Fund and Program, will support $400 million in grants distributed based on student enrollment and local need. It will also support $450 million in competitive grants for new construction, expansion and upgrades to schools in need in partnership with local school boards. SB 471 will provide $400 million in school construction loans and make additional improvements to the administration of the Literary Fund construction loan program.
“This year, the Commonwealth has been able to help localities build and upgrade their schools,” said House Appropriations Chairman Barry Knight, R-Virginia Beach. “We were able to mobilize $1 billion that was set aside to create a $3 billion school construction and upgrade fund. This represents a significant investment in the education and future of Virginia’s children and I think it’s a great deal that we can all support.
“I am grateful that Governor Youngkin signed my HB 563 today, and I appreciate everyone who helped bring this bill across the finish line,” Deputy Majority Leader Israel O said. ‘Quinn, R-Washington. “This change in Virginia’s approach to building schools is a big deal for school divisions across the Commonwealth, but especially in Southwest Virginia. Building new schools across the state ultimately means the real winners are the students.
“The new School Building Fund and enhanced Literary Fund loans will lay the groundwork to repair Virginia’s crumbling school infrastructure,” said Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond. “I am honored to have worked with my fellow Democrats and Republicans to make bipartisan progress on building public schools. I look forward to working with them in the years to come to continue making critical investments in the Our children cannot learn in crumbling schools, and Virginia’s investments in modernizing schools cannot wait.
“We are delighted to welcome these bill signings as we celebrate our new school and the world-class career paths students will have access to here,” Mecklenburg Superintendent Paul Nichols said. “Mecklenburg students will benefit greatly from historic budgetary investments in academic facilities and laboratory schools developed in partnership with K-12, post-secondary and employers.”
Governor Youngkin also participated in a roundtable at Southside Virginia Community College to discuss the Lab School’s efforts at Southside and the needs of the area’s students and economy.
“Southside Virginia Community College is excited to build on its strong partnership with Mecklenburg County Public Schools as part of our plan to launch the first laboratory school in the Commonwealth Community College system under the leadership of the Governor Youngkin,” Southside Virginia Community College President Dr. Quentin R. Johnson said. “By authorizing community colleges and centers of higher learning to run laboratory schools, the Governor and the General Assembly have ensured that students across the Commonwealth can benefit from these innovative options.”
Additionally, attendees shared their plans to launch a lab school at the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center that will grow its Career Tech Academy through employability skills. Attendees also discussed plans to expand the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research’s GO TEC Middle School Connection and Career Exploration Program.
“This roundtable has been a great opportunity to come together with post-secondary partners, superintendents, teachers, students and General Assembly leaders to discuss what is working and not working in education in the Commonwealth. said Gov. Glenn Youngkin. “We must continue to work together to empower parents and students, support teachers and foster innovation.”
“Yesterday’s visit and roundtable demonstrated that when our public schools partner with higher education and the private sector, an innovative academic model is developed that provides our students with multiple pathways to obtain certifications from the industry in areas of high demand,” said House Education President Glenn Davis, R.-Beach of Virginia. “It is clear that the Virginia Lab School initiative will provide the flexibility and funding needed to foster this type of learning environment and provide students across the Commonwealth with the opportunity to receive an education that prepares them to a 21st century career straight out of high school. ”