District 509-J breaks even on eclipse events
School District 509-J helped host many of the distinguished scientists and eclipse-related events at its facilities, but just broke even on the costs, according to information presented at the Oct. 9 board of directors meeting.
District Chief Financial Officer Martha Bewley reported that five groups rented parts of buildings and camping spots on the football field at Madras High School, Jefferson County Middle School and the Performing Arts Center.
The groups included Hoshi, Lowell Observatory, MJ Net, Tenmon and Travel Quest, who paid a total of $5,360 in rental fees.
In addition, the Jefferson County Tourism Group paid $68,443 in transportation costs for the use of 509-J school buses and drivers, and $17,449 was received to provide security. However, since the bus and security services were provided by district employees and six vendors (who had to be paid), and the district provided the fuel for buses, no profit was made.
The district also received payment for $690 worth of food, and $1,420 from the rental of tables, chairs and tents. The total revenue from the eclipse activities was $93,362, before expenses, which was close to a break-even amount for the district.
In total, Bewley reported, "We did not generate enough money to cover all the expenses."
The public and students did, however, benefit from all the scientific programs presented at the Performing Arts Center by NASA and Lowell scientists, the positive publicity, and contact with many foreigners attending the events.
Bewley noted that MHS and JCMS held their own fundraisers, separate from district services, which did turn a profit.
JCMS earned $11,277 by providing concessions, camping and parking, and the school will be able to keep the money it earned. MHS made a profit of $10,897 by providing concessions and parking. At the high school, $393 went to clubs that provided services, while the remaining $10,504 will go to athletic departments, which did most of the fundraising.
Superintendent Ken Parshall reported on enrollment, saying 509-J had projected it would have 3,030 students by Oct. 1, and the actual figure was 2,983. "So, we are down by 47 students from what was projected," Parshall said.
Board Chairman Laurie Danzuka and member Courtney Snead commented on their recent trip to the National Indian Education Association meeting in Orlando, Florida.
Snead said she attended sessions on Impact Aid and tribal consultations. Danzuka said, "It was a chance to see what's happening in other districts across the country," adding, "We need to celebrate our successes more, and foster better relationships with the tribes."
A report on the financial audit done by certified public accountant Brenda Bartlett, was presented. Bartlett said it was a clean audit, with only a few minor errors, such as the wrong hiring date recorded for a few employees.
She did recommend that the district tighten up on tracking the way MHS student body funds (from fundraising) are recorded. "There was significant overspending at MHS, so that the school's discretionary fund was used to cover it," Bartlett said.
Under personnel, one-year temporary contracts for districtwide substitute teachers were given to Julie Mitchell, Amanda Waardenburg, and Briana Hansen; and Vicki Anderson was hired as a teacher on an 85-day contract for Madras Elementary.
Coaching hires included Darrell Sumner, JCMS head football; Jonathan Becerra and Scott Vrana, assistant football, Scott Vrana, assistant boys basketball, and Jeremiah Whited, assistant wrestling, all at Warm Springs K-8 Academy; Taw Foltz, MHS assistant girls basketball; and Deseray Duncan as yearbook advisor at JCMS.