LeBron James has been in the headlines recently for opening up a school in Akron, but as it turns out, Akron taxpayers will be paying for the bulk of the “free” school.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the NBA legend wanted to give back to Ohio, and to that end, he opened up the I Promise school in Akron. Aimed at helping underprivileged children escape from gangs, crime, and poverty, the school promises free tuition, free books, even a free bicycle so kids can have transportation there. James also promises to pay the college tuition to the University of Akron for all graduates.
And as The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported on July 29, the school was open to the public with much fanfare, so that some of the first class of third- and fourth-graders could get a glimpse of their new school. The innovative school will feature such things as a working TV studio to teach kids about broadcasting as well as the scientific and mathematical concepts behind the process.
Beyond just the focus on academia – and specifically, focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) subjects – the school will also offer “academic, career and emotional support” to students and their families.
However, despite James’ involvement, and despite his significant financial contributions to the school, it is still considered a public school in Akron, which means that Akron Public Schools – via the taxpayers – will bear the majority of the cost for the school.
As The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports, the specifics of how much of the cost of the school will be borne by LeBron’s foundation, vs. borne by the Akron taxpayers, are still being sorted out, according to writer Patrick O’Donnell. But by most estimates, the taxpayers will be on the hook for about 75 percent of the cost of the school – or about $8 million per year.