Section 37I. Notwithstanding any contrary provisions of law, including, but not limited to, chapter six hundred forty-five of the acts of nineteen hundred and forty-eight, as amended, the board of education, in this section and section thirty-seven J called the board, may, subject to appropriation, make grants for the cost of providing magnet school facilities. For the purpose of this section, the term “magnet school facility” shall mean a public school or part thereof which meets such requirements as may be established by the board and attracts pupils from outside the neighborhood in which it is located for the purpose of reducing or eliminating racial imbalance or racial isolation, as defined in section thirty-seven D.
The school committee of any city or town or any regional district school committee may apply to the board for a grant to such city, town, or regional district school committee for all or part of the cost of providing a magnet school facility. Such application shall be in such form as may be prescribed by the board and shall be accompanied by such estimates and other information as the board may require. The board may approve any such application for a facility which meets such requirements and which is likely so to attract pupils so as to reduce or eliminate racial imbalance or racial isolation. The board shall notify such school committee or regional district school committee of its approval or disapproval of such application and, in the case of approval, of the estimated amount of the grant which the board will make.
After notification of approval, the board and such school committee or regional district school committee may enter into an agreement providing that such school committee or regional district school committee shall provide, within a reasonable time, such magnet school facility, as approved by the board, and that the commonwealth shall pay to such city, town or regional district school committee the amount of such grant. Any such agreement shall provide that such facility shall be operated in a manner designed to achieve racial balance therein or at the public school of which such facility is a part and that, whenever such school committee or regional district school committee determines, in accordance with regulations of the board, that the number of places available at such facility or school is exceeded by the number of pupils who have applied to be transferred to and to attend such facility or school, the selection of particular pupils to be transferred to and to attend such facility or school shall be in accordance with regulations of the board, which regulations shall reasonably provide for priority for those non-white pupils who are attending or otherwise would attend a racially imbalanced school and for those white pupils who are attending or otherwise would attend a racially isolated school.
The board may, subject to appropriation, make grants for the cost of providing magnet school facilities for the purpose of reducing or eliminating imbalance of minority students, as defined in the regulations promulgated under the federal Emergency School Aid Act, Title VII of Public Law 92-318, as amended.
The following costs of providing a magnet school facility shall be eligible for any such grant:
(i) the average cost per pupil of educating each child who attends such facility or the public school of which such facility is a part, less the average cost per pupil of educating each such child at the public school which he otherwise would have attended; provided, however, that such costs shall be determined according to a method approved by the board, and that, to the extent possible, such method shall determine the average cost per pupil of educating each such child in the grade in which he is enrolled;
(ii) the cost of transportation of each child attending such magnet school facility;
(iii) the cost of planning and construction, reconstruction, enlargement, rehabilitation, or other improvement for the magnet school facility provided, however, that no such grant shall be for more than seventy-five percent of any such cost and
(iv) such other costs incidental to the provision of the magnet school facility as the board may approve.
The board may adopt regulations for the administration of the provisions of this section.