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Agreement between Newton, Social Circle schools now in effect

Photo by Howard Reed

Photo by Howard Reed

SOCIAL CIRCLE -- An agreement signed in 2007 between the Newton County Board of Education and the Social Circle Board of Education that took effect this month allows Newton County students to attend Social Circle schools.

In May 2007, the two entities entered into an intergovernmental agreement that was effective beginning Dec. 1, 2010, and will conclude on Nov. 30, 2015. Under the agreement, Social Circle City Schools will receive payment from the Newton County BOE for each student residing outside of the Social Circle school district and within the boundaries of the Newton County School System who attends schools owned and operated by Social Circle schools.

The agreement allows ad valorem tax dollars designated for Newton County students to follow any student who is approved to attend Social Circle City Schools. Before now, any out-of-district student paid $2,000 per year out of pocket to attend Social Circle schools.

Currently, fewer than 50 students from Newton County attend Social Circle schools, and many are children of employees, who always have been allowed to attend the schools as allowed by Georgia law, according to Superintendent Dr. Bettye Ray.

She said any out-of-county students are allowed to attend Social Circle schools only if its schools have enough space.

"They have to make application," she said. "We don't have a lot of space -- we had to turn several away this summer."