Senator Dick Brewbaker

Thousands of Alabama children are attending private schools thanks to Accountability Act scholarships, but very few of those students transferred out of a failing public school.

The state program provides private school scholarships to help low-income students attend private schools. When lawmakers started the program in 2013, it was touted as a way to help students escape schools with chronically low test scores.

The Decatur Daily reports that, according to state data over the past three years, only 39 students withdrew from failing schools to attend private schools.

Alabama senators have approved establishing an innocence commission to review some of the state’s capital convictions.

Senators voted 20-6 in favor of the bill yesterday, sending it to the House of Representatives. The proposed legislation would create a panel to review new evidence in death row cases that hadn't previously been heard by a court.

Bill sponsor, Republican Senator Dick Brewbaker, says he supports the death penalty in Alabama, but he thinks the state should work harder to make sure people are guilty before executing them.

Alabama is one of eight states that do not allow charter schools, and some legislators want to change that.

Several Republican lawmakers said they will make another push to establish charter schools in Alabama, at least on a limited basis. Republican Senator Dick Brewbaker of Pike Road said he believes families need more education options for their children.

Charter schools are new publicly funded schools that operate outside the rules and regulations of regular public schools.

Trent Moore/The Cullman Times

The Alabama Legislature has authorized city and county school systems to hire armed security guards to protect students.

The Senate voted 21-0 Monday to go along with changes the House made to a school security bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Dick Brewbaker of Montgomery. The bill now goes to the governor for review.

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The sponsor of a bill to repeal the state's use of Common Core education standards has decided to kill his own bill.

The chairman of the Senate Education Committee, Republican Dick Brewbaker of Montgomery, took the action Wednesday when it became clear his committee wouldn't remove the Common Core standards.

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Alabama's school superintendent says the State Board of Education didn't relinquish control of school standards when it adopted the Common Core standards for schools statewide.

Superintendent Tommy Bice talked about the standards Tuesday because a state Senate committee is scheduled to consider a bill Wednesday that would repeal the standards. Critics of the national standards say they take away local control and give too much control to Washington.