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Baker donates $6,000 to Atmore schools

By By Adam Prestridge
State Rep. Alan Baker (R-Brewton), in an attempt to “try to sooth some of the pain,” has been visiting all the schools in District 66 presenting each with a check for $1,500 as part of a Community Service Grant.
“The Legislature made a very painful decision last spring, while crafting the education budget, and our top priority was saving as many education jobs as we could,” Baker said. “To do that, we did have to make some drastic cuts, and one of those being the instructional money provided to each teacher, that was zeroed out completely.”
Common purchases were also zeroed out in proration, which include expenses such as copier leases, toner and paper; equipment and materials that all faculty members utilize.
Last week, Baker presented checks to faculty members at Rachel Patterson and A.C. Moore elementary schools and Escambia County middle and high schools. He said the staffs were very grateful for the funds.
Rachel Patterson principal Susan McKenzie was pleased to receive the extra funds.
Baker believes his background in education gives him a good understanding of the needs of educators.
David Nolin, A.C. Moore principal, said the money is greatly needed and appreciated.
Escambia County Middle School principal Zickeyous Byrd said that he is going to allow his teachers to vote on how the $1,500 donation will be spent.
Byrd said one of the greatest needs at the school is copy paper because teachers are unable to make copies of some instructional items he believes are essential to instruction. Fortunately for ECMS, others in the community have also donated to the school.
Baker also made donations to the additional 11 schools in Escambia County and the four in his district in Baldwin County, including Perdido.