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South Rome Early Learning Center has funding through school year

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The South Rome Early Learning Center has enough funding to get through the remainder of the school year, according to information presented to Rome Board of Education members Tuesday.

The board initially had been requested to provide $90,000 for the rest of this school year to pay for two teachers and two assistant teachers. Additionally, it was proposed for the system to allocate $150,000 for all of next school year for the same purpose.

However, Superintendent Lou Byars said South Rome Redevelopment Corp., a partner with the system and Berry College, officials have indicated funding from the system is not needed to get to the end of the year. But a new memorandum of understanding and reworking of the partnership is still in the works.

“We’re going to take a hard look,” at a number of lingering issues with the center’s current arrangement, so as not to be in the same situation next year, Byars said.

Some issues include tuition rates, a low level of students in the Anna K. Davie Elementary district — where the center is housed — and hours that don’t align with work schedules of parents.

Byars said, in looking at next year, the system could use federal Title IV funding, specific for early intervention, for the center’s teachers. Also, the system would still go forward in transitioning the current teachers and assistant teachers to Rome City Schools employees.