The Prince William Board of County Supervisors voted Tuesday, Jan. 10, to give more than $21 million to Prince William County Schools to fund capital infrastructure needs. The resolution is part of the Board's commitment to fund identified needs of the schools. "This vote shows that schools are clearly at the top of our list as far as budgetary priorities go," said Board of County Supervisor's Chairman Corey A. Stewart.
The money given to the schools will be over and above the school system's share of the general revenue as identified in the revenue sharing agreement between the county and the school system, and provides the revenues identified by the schools that are required to address capital construction needs throughout the county.
A new 13th high school has been identified by the schools as a primary need to meet the growth in the western end of the county. The School Board considered two design models for the new high school – the PRICE Model and the Battlefield Model. Originally, the School Board settled on the Battlefield Model, which seats approximately 2,000 students, citing a lack of funds needed for the larger PRICE Model, which seats approximately 2,500 students. However, with high school enrollment exceeding projected enrollment by 777 students, the Board of Supervisors voted to give the additional $10,675,000 that the School Board noted is necessary to build the larger PRICE Model high school.
The schools also identified numerous renovation and remodeling projects necessary to reduce elementary school overcrowding in the eastern of the county. So, the Board of Supervisors agreed that equal funding of $10,675,000 was also necessary in order to meet the need in eastern Prince William County.
"It's the board's aim to provide relief to schools in both ends of the county," said Stewart. "This provides an extra $21 million that was not part of the revenue sharing agreement. We're going above and beyond the call of duty here to help fix the situation with regard to school crowding."