Russellville School Board votes to charge tuition for out of district students

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RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - A decision by the Russellville City School Board has the parents of almost 1,000 students scrambling.

At the start of next school year, students outside the city limits will either have to pay tuition or go to a county school.

“It is cruel to uproot them from a school system that they are accustoming to,” explained parent Miranda Kennamore.

But that’s what is set to happen in August, the start of a new school year in Russellville.

The Russellville School Board unanimously approved charging students from outside the district $600 per year for tuition.

The district said they have 900 students from out of district attending school and they are facing millions in construction costs.

“It really doesn’t make much sense to drive past the school and go 15-minutes to Belgreen which is the district we would fall in, and we can literally almost see the school from our home,” stated Kennamore.

She has a daughter who has been attending Russellville schools for six years.

Now faced with paying tuition or transferring her daughter, she started an online petition to ask the board to reconsider their actions.

“A lot of people are proud to be Golden Tigers. Some of their children were grandfathered and some wasn’t, and so their moving all their children to another district and it’s not fair on the children who are currently enrolled in the school system.”

Current high school students and incoming eighth graders will be grandfathered in to the school system. Kennamore just wishes the board would grandfather in all current students.

We reached out to Russellville City Schools to comment on this story; they declined and referred us to an online news release.

They stated parents will be formally notified by mail with further details on their enrollment decision.