On August 5, 2022, Governor Glenn Yongkin participated in the official grand opening and ribbon-cutting of Mecklenburg County Middle School and High School, the best-in-class co-ed school made available by the community. The governor also formally signed HB 563, sponsored by Deputy Majority Leader Israel O’Quinn, R-Washington, and SB 473, and SB 471, sponsored by Senator Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond.
“These schools show how the community can come together to not only build a modern facility but to invest in their children and transform their workforce,” said Governor Glenn Yongkin. And through the bipartisan alliance that unanimously introduced these laws, we are fulfilling our commitment to support vibrant 21st century educational environments across the Commonwealth. This is what happens when we put our students first; We get it done 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 needs. It will also support $450 million in competitive grants for new construction, expansion and modernization projects for high-need schools in partnership with local school boards. SB 471 will provide $400 million in loans to build schools and make additional management improvements to the Literary Fund Construction Loan Program.
“This year the Commonwealth was in a position to help localities build and modernize their schools,” said House Appropriations Head Barry Knight, R. Virginia Beach. “We were able to leverage $1 billion, which has been earmarked for a $3 billion school building and modernization fund. This is a huge investment in the education and future of Virginia’s children, and I think it’s a good deal we can all get behind.”
“I am grateful for Governor Youngkin’s signature on HB 563 today, and I appreciate everyone who helped get this bill across the finish line,” Deputy Majority Leader Yisrael O’Quinn, of Washington State, said. “This shift in Virginia’s approach to school building is a big deal for school departments across the Commonwealth, but particularly in Southwest Virginia. Building new schools across the state ultimately means that the real winners are the students.”
“The new School Building Fund and Enhanced Literary Fund loans will lay the foundation for repairing Virginia’s dilapidated school infrastructure,” said Senator Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond. “I am honored to work with fellow Democrats and Republicans to make bipartisan progress in building public schools. I look forward to working with them in the coming years to continue to make important investments in the future. Our children cannot learn in dilapidated schools, and Virginia cannot wait for investments in modernizing schools.” .
“We are delighted to host these law signings as we celebrate our new school and the world-class career paths that students will reach here,” said Mecklenburg Principal Paul Nichols. “Mecklenburg students will benefit greatly from historic budget investments in school facilities and laboratory schools developed in partnership with K-12, post-secondary schools, and employers.”
Governor Glenn Yongkin and Education Secretary Amy Guedera participate in a roundtable discussion at Southside Virginia Community College on Friday, August 5, 2022. Official photo of Christian Martinez, Governor Glenn Yongkin’s office.
Governor Youngkin also participated in a roundtable discussion at Southside Virginia Community College to discuss the efforts of the Southside Laboratory School, the needs of students in the area, and the economy.
Southside Virginia Community College President Dr. Quentin R. Johnson. “By allowing community colleges and centers of higher education to lead laboratory schools, the Governor and General Assembly have taken care to ensure that students across the Commonwealth benefit from these innovative options.”
Additionally, participants shared plans to launch a lab school at the Southern Virginia Center for Higher Education that would expand Career Tech Academy through Employability Skills. Participants also discussed plans to expand the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research’s GO TEC Middle School Professional Engagements and Exploration Program.
“This roundtable was a wonderful opportunity to meet with post-secondary partners, supervisors, educators, students and leaders in the General Assembly to discuss what works — and what doesn’t — in education in the Commonwealth,” Governor Yongkin said. “We must continue to work together to empower parents and students, support teachers, and foster innovation.”
Glenn Davis, Chair of House Education, Glenn Davis, said: “Yesterday’s tour and roundtable demonstrated that when our public schools partner with higher education and the private sector, an innovative academic model is developed, providing our students with multiple pathways to industry degrees in high-demand fields. “. , R. Virginia Beach. “It is clear that the Virginia Lab School initiative will provide the flexibility and funding needed to enhance this type of learning environment and provide students across the Commonwealth with the opportunity to receive an education that prepares them for a twenty-first century career once they graduate from high school.”