§ 16-3.1-21. YouthBuild Preparatory Academy.
(a) Notwithstanding the provisions of any general or special law to the contrary, the school committees of the cities of Providence and Central Falls are authorized and empowered to initiate and implement cooperative efforts, including, but not limited to, collaborative use of technology, to provide an alternative, diploma-granting secondary education program to be known as the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy (hereinafter "academy") for their respective resident students ages fourteen (14) to twenty-one (21) who are achieving limited success in traditional settings.
(1) The purpose of this section is to further enable the school committees of the cities of Providence and Central Falls:
(i) To support students at risk of school failure, with a special focus on the diverse needs of urban students, to create an environment for individual growth, and to cultivate social and emotional development;
(ii) To offer a rigorous and relevant standards-driven, experiential learning community, and to provide college and career preparatory education based on guided, project-based core curriculum with an emphasis on education, human services, and community development; and
(iii) To provide an alternative learning environment for disconnected and at-risk students desiring to complete their academic careers in a setting that offers comprehensive support services, accelerated academic curriculum, leadership development, and life skills that will enable them to become resilient, self-sufficient adults.
(2) The YouthBuild Preparatory Academy shall be operated under the provisions of this chapter. Students attending the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy will do so on a full-time basis with the costs for their education at the academy being shared by the state and the district of residence as described in § 16-7.2-5.
(3) The YouthBuild Preparatory Academy shall be governed by a board of trustees; with the exception of those powers and duties reserved by the commissioner of elementary and secondary education, the board of education, and the school committees of the cities of Providence and Central Falls, the board of trustees shall have the powers and duties of school committees.
(4) Composition of the board of trustees. The board of trustees of the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy shall consist of:
(i) One appointee of the board of trustees of the Central Falls school district;
(ii) One appointee of the school board of the city of Providence; and
(iii) The council on elementary and secondary education shall appoint the remaining members of the board of trustees of the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy with input from the commissioner of elementary and secondary education. Prior to enrolling students, the board of trustees shall present a plan for the governance, administration, and operation of the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy, including the nature and extent of parental, professional educator, and community involvement in the governance and operation of the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy, and the means of ensuring accountability, to the commissioner, the Providence and Central Falls school districts, and the council on elementary and secondary education.
(5) The academy authorized under this section shall be subject to educational and financial standards and reporting as deemed necessary by the department of elementary and secondary education.
(b) The YouthBuild Preparatory Academy shall be eligible to receive other aid, grants, Medicaid revenue, and any other revenue according to Rhode Island law, as though it is a school district. Federal aid received by the state shall be used to benefit students in the YouthBuild Preparatory Academy, if the school qualifies for the aid, as though it is a school district.
(P.L. 2016, ch. 208, § 1; P.L. 2016, ch. 210, § 1.)