ADECA awards $81,443 to ECHS

Published 8:51 am Monday, May 16, 2005

By By Lee Weyhrich
The Escambia County Board of Education has been awarded a $81,443 grant for suspension deferral.
According to information provided by Gov. Bob Riley's office the money will go towards a program "that holds juvenile offenders accountable for their actions, helps them to overcome their problems and encourages them to complete their education."
The money will help expand a program that was begun at W.S. Neal High School and W.S. Neal Middle School to Escambia County High School in Atmore.
"This program helps troubled juveniles curb behaviors that could lead to dropping out of school and participating in further criminal activities," Riley said in a prepared statement. "I commend Escambia County officials for giving students a second chance and encouraging them to become productive members of society."
The program puts offenders in a situation where they have to face the people they have hurt and attempt to make amends as an alternative to suspension. The offender is also required to acquire a job or do community service as a way to pay back their victims or the community.
According to information provided, "It provides juveniles with specialized counseling that enables them to accept responsibility for their behavior and refrain from committing additional offenses. "
It also allows the juvenile offenders to stay in school rather than be placed on suspension or be expelled from school.
The money was awarded through Riley from funds made available through the U.S Department of Justice. The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) is administering the grant.
Escambia County Schools Superintendent Melvin "Buck" Powell was unavailable for comment

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