School board severs ties with Manatee County YMCA technical school

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BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Manatee County School District will not renew the contract with the Manatee Y technological high school.

The move comes weeks after the YMCA was accused of mishandling county funding.

The county began an investigation into the Manatee Y after receiving an email alleging the YMCA was making up information to justify money the county was giving it to fund programs.

The 200 students who attended the Y technical school must now either return to their zoned schools, attend a new program at Horizons Academy, enter adult GED programs, or enroll in Florida Virtual School.

YMCA officials say the district sited financial concerns for the contract termination. And, Manatee County Schools have said the decision is expected to save them more than $800,000 a year.

"We appreciate the faith you showed in us more than two years ago when the School District asked the YMCA  to step in, at the 11th hour, to provide at-risk students a place to go after the closing of the Richard Milburn Academy.  We believe the YMCA remains a vital part of the solution, that it makes economic sense, and that we’ll continue to be able to come through for these children as we’ve done before,” said Manatee County Family YMCA chairman Joseph Brannon in a statement released Thursday.

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