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Valley school gets $1M grant for learning center project

Staff report

YOUNGSTOWN — The Mahoning Valley Community School received a $1 million state grant to develop a community learning center on the city’s South Side.

The school purchased the former Job and Family Services building at 2026 South Ave. to turn it into a community learning center to bring together wellness, education and resources to promote resiliency and improve outcomes for youth and families in the Mahoning Valley.

The first phase would renovate the building. The second phase would include a gymnasium, cafeteria, additional workforce development classrooms, a wellness center, a media center and a childcare facility.

The school plans to open its new location no later than June.

“We have been looking forward to this project for quite some time and to finally see this coming together so that we can provide this building for our students and families is incredible,” Jennifer Merritt, the school’s superintendent, said.

The Mahoning Valley Community School obtained the funding in partnership with the Mahoning County Mental Health and Recovery Board.

“This project is a perfect match for this (state) youth resiliency funding and will provide a great resource to our community,” Duane Piccirilli, executive director of the mental health and recovery board, said.

Judge Theresa Dellick of Mahoning County Juvenile Court founded the school with local superintendents in 2008 as an option for students in grades 7 to 12 in need of alternative options.

“We are so proud of the collaboration between the juvenile court and the school in helping our children and families access the resources in this new community learning center,” Dellick said.

news@vindy.com

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