(WJHL) – Tennessee State Representative David Hawk said he plans to focus on education funding in the coming year at the general assembly in Nashville.

Hawk told News Channel 11’s Bianca Marais he plans to propose a piece of legislation to use funds earned through online sports betting, which was legalized in Tennessee November 2020, to fund school systems.

Hawk expects Tennessee classrooms will look different when students return to in-person learning and that will cost money.

“I’m going to try to take those dollars, 80% of those dollars, and put them back toward local governments for K though 12 facility building,” Hawk said. “It’s something that has not been tried before, so I’m going to try to dedicate those funds.”

Hawk told News Channel 11’s Bianca Marais Tennessee online gambling brought in 2.4 million dollars in the first month of revenue to the state’s lottery fund since becoming legal in November.

The lottery fund currently covers higher education projects, but Hawk said his constituents are urging him to help students who are in grades K through 12.

“If there is $25,000,000 that comes into the online gambling through the state of Tennessee then just split that on a per pupil basis,” Hawks said. “$25,000,000 would mean $25 per student would go back to school districts.”

Follow News Channel 11’s Bianca Marais on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on the issue.