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New round of state grants fund dropout prevention

Five area colleges have been awarded grants to help prevent at-risk middle and high school students from dropping out of school.

The state Education Department awarded a total of $2.25 million to the University at Buffalo, SUNY Buffalo State, SUNY Fredonia, Genesee Community College and Jamestown Community College as part of the Liberty Partnerships Program, the only state-funded dropout prevention initiative.

Each college – which partners with a school district and community-based organization – will receive $450,000 to provide selected students with a year of continuous services, such as tutoring, mentoring and academic and family counseling.

The Liberty Partnerships Program, started in 1988, served 13,461 students in 2015-16 from 443 partner schools around the state. Ninety-two percent of the seniors who participated in the program graduated, according to the state Education Department.

The five area colleges were among 44 around the state awarded a total of $17 million for the next five years.


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