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Board hopeful for college campus
The head of the Golden Isles Career Academy expects Altamaha Technical College will begin construction of its own campus in Glynn County as early as next year.

Rick Townsend, chief executive of the career academy, told the Glynn County Board of Education at its meeting Tuesday that the technical college could get what it needs when the state General Assembly convenes its 2013 session in January.

"Right now the only thing Altamaha Tech is lacking is funding from the legislature," Townsend said.

The technical college was slated to receive funding to construct its own 55,000-square-foot building on a lot adjacent to the career academy, but the funding was pulled by the legislature to pay for a similar project for Gwinnett Technical College.

"If everything goes well, they could be breaking ground in 2013," Townsend said.

The new building will be good for the career academy in two ways, Townsend said.

First, Altamaha Tech's larger facility will open the door for more dual enrollment opportunities, he said. Second, moving the technical school students out of the career academy will open the door for more high school students.

School board member Mike Hulsey said he wants to see a clear plan for increasing enrollment at the career academy.

"I don't think we are at peak efficiency now," Hulsey said. "We are getting to be about as lean (financially) as we can get, and we need to make sure our facilities are running as efficiently as possible."

Townsend said he's confident having more space in the building and cooperation between both high schools will increase enrollment at the career academy.

In other business, the board:

* Approved a resolution opposing House Resolution 1162, also known as the charter school amendment. The board contends the amendment, which would allow a state commission to create charter schools without the approval of local boards, would pull funding from already ailing public school systems.

* Approved the participation of Glynn Academy French teacher Shannon Henry in the Fulbright Teacher Exchange Program.Henry will spend a school year in France in exchange for a teacher from France teaching here.

* Was updated by lead social worker Greg Jaudon on students considered homeless under the McKinney-Vento Act. This year, 179 students have been identified as homeless, meaning they lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence. It includes students who share housing, live in motels, emergency shelters, cars or are awaiting foster care placement.

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