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The Roanoke Rapids Graded School District Board of Trustees voted Tuesday night to reduce the district’s supplemental school tax rate by one cent from 22.5 cents to 21.5 cents per $100 of valuation.

The move compensates for Halifax County’s recent revaluation of property values, the school system said in a statement.   

State law requires counties to reappraise property every eight years to make sure property values accurately reflect their market value.  

Based on the new rate, the adjustment will reduce the district's revenue by approximately $100,000 next year. 

The district’s $30 million 2020-2021 budget also maintains the current level of spending per pupil at $9,852 which includes federal, state, and local dollars.  

Homeless students grant

The district received $45,000 this week to help students who are deemed homeless.  

The district will receive $15,000 a year for the next three years as part of the federal  McKinney-Vento Homeless sub-grant.  

By definition, students are identified as homeless if they reside in emergency shelters, motels, hotels, RV parks, cars, parks, public spaces, or abandoned buildings, and those sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason.  RRGSD currently has more than 80 homeless students.  

“This grant will enable us to offer after school tutoring for these students and pay for some of them to attend our after school Place to Play program,” said Tom Davis, executive director of student support services. “Research shows that many of these students lack a quiet space to complete homework assignments. For that reason this money will assist them in staying on grade level.” 

The McKinney-Vento Act was established in 1987 to ensure the right of students to go to school even when they are homeless or don’t have a permanent address. 

The act aims to reduce barriers that have prevented many homeless youth from enrolling, attending, and succeeding in school due to circumstances beyond their control.