Fight for school construction funding to continue in General Assembly

Published: Dec. 29, 2020 at 6:15 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Senator Bill Stanley is hoping a third time’s the charm.

He’s bringing back legislation designed to help improve outdated schools across the Commonwealth.

And Stanley says 2021 might just be the year the General Assembly says yes.

“I’m going to keep putting these bills in until they get passed,” Stanley told WDBJ7 this week.

His goal is straightforward: to ensure students in rural areas and inner cities receive the same education as students in more prosperous regions, such as northern Virginia.

“Children in the first and second grade in Loudoun County are being taught computer coding,” Stanley said, “where students in Lee County are in a building that was built around the time of World War I, only have one electric outlet in their classroom, so they can’t even get a white board or a computer into those classrooms. So we need to make sure that everybody receives the same educational opportunity and the same education.”

Stanley is re-introducing three bills, including one that would create a fund for roof repairs or replacement.

A second calls for a constitutional amendment requiring Virginia to provide students with an equal education regardless of where they live.

The third proposes a statewide referendum on a $3 billion bond issue that would finance school construction.

Stanley believes their prospects will improve in an election year.

“I’m very hopeful that our gubernatorial candidates will get behind these initiatives,” Stanley said, “but follow through with them as well.”

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