February 11, 2016

School board to donate to Project Graduation next year

Danedri Thompson

School board members directed district staff to set aside $5,000 in next year’s budget to donate to Project Graduation next year. Last year, due to budget constraints the district was unable to donate funds to the annual event that gives Gardner Edgerton High School students a safe activity on graduation night.

“In early years, we donated the food, but last year because of funding, we weren’t able to do it,” board member Mark Grannell said.

Parents and volunteers raise money throughout the year for the event, but Grannell explained that location rental sometimes costs as much as $6,500.

“It’s becoming more and more difficult to fundraise in this recession,” School superintendent Bill Gilhaus said.

In other business, school board members learned that BNSF has agreed to delay plans to do railroad grading in areas where the school’s fiber optics cables are. The BNSF project would interrupt school at Edgerton Elementary if completed in March – when BNSF originally scheduled the project.

Lora Baugher, district director of information systems, told board members that she has requested the railroad delay the project and also that BNSF pay for any costs the district may incur associated with the railroad company’s rail grading project.

Baugher said she’s still waiting on formal documents to solidify the agreement.

In other business, board members:

• approved a 1.4 percent salary increase for district superintendent Gilhaus. The increase brings his annual salary to $173,929. Last month, board members approved 1.4 percent raises for teachers and all other district employees.

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