Scholarships aid parents moving kids under Accountability Act - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Scholarships aid parents moving kids under Accountability Act

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Several scholarship funds like Alabama Opportunity and Scholarships for Kids are now taking applications for the fall. Several scholarship funds like Alabama Opportunity and Scholarships for Kids are now taking applications for the fall.
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Larry Newby of Huntsville said his grandsons are thriving at their new school, Union Chapel Christian Academy, after he had to get them out of their public school, Ed White Middle.

"They were failing; they were getting Ds and Fs," Newby said. "One of my grandsons was attacked a couple of times. It's been a joyful change. Their education is better."

Newby got help under the Alabama Accountability Act, which lets students in failing public schools transfer to non-failing public schools or get tax credits for private school. It also provides for scholarship funds, which can help lower-income families further.

Several scholarship funds like Alabama Opportunity and Scholarships for Kids are now taking applications for the fall. Huntsville's private Country Day School is expecting as many as 40 new students to enroll through the Accountability Act.

"We have had parents, when they have understood what the possibilities are, have sat there and wept," said Country Day School's director, Sherri Naff. "They are so excited about the fact that their child will have the opportunity."

With all the controversy over the Accountability Act, some educators are concerned that the scholarship provision may have been overshadowed.

"We certainly are not politically oriented in any way about this matter," said Naff. "We're just happy to have these opportunities, but I do think the public has not been made aware of these opportunities."

Newby said he feels blessed to have gotten a scholarship for his grandsons. "I hope a lot of others continue to apply for it and receive it as well, because it's something good," he said.

Unlike the Accountability Act tax credits, which are for students zoned for failing schools, the scholarships give priority to those students, then open up to lower-income students who qualify.

In Huntsville, Oakwood Academy, Country Day School, Huntsville Montessori and all of the area's Catholic schools participate.

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