Stimulus money means a lot of improvements in Region 8 schools

By Brandi Hodges - bio | email

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Every year school districts work and rework their budgets trying to provide as much as they can for their students.  But this year that will be easier thanks to millions of dollars in stimulus money coming to Region 8 schools. 

More money is flowing through the budget of Lawrence County Public Schools!

"You are allowed to buy some large ticket items and several items that it would have taken you several years to be able to purchase," said Superintendent Terry Belcher.

Now this money will help improve education and safety at the schools.

"I love the opportunities that are going to be provided to our school that maybe weren't able to provide before," said Lea Andra Foster.

Algebra teacher Lea Andra Foster has a classroom close to a set of outside doors and she often keeps her classroom door locked to serve as an added boundary.  Thanks to this extra money, extra cameras will be added to the school.

"I feel like we're responsible for them while they're in our care.  If it will provide an element of safety or an element of keeping something from happening then the more the better," said Foster.

They've had cameras on campus for about seven years but more are needed.

"There are some obscure area's that we are going to add cameras and add more up to date cameras," said Belcher.

We all take into consideration the safety of children while they're at school but we also have to think about how safe they are when they leave the school.  That's one reason it's so important to have security cameras on buses.

"If you have an incident on a bus it's nice to go back and review it and we don't get into he said she said," said Belcher.

Belcher also hopes on bus cameras will provide extra help in other areas.

"If there's an accident it will be able to tell us how fast the driver was going or give us lots of information," said Belcher.

They hope to put eight cameras on buses in Walnut Ridge and three on the buses at Black Rock.  Belcher hopes nothing happens on the buses that the cameras will be needed for but it will be nice to have them just in case.

The school is earmarked to receive $1.5 million to be used half by January of this year and the other half by January of 2010. 

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