Greencastle-Antrim school board to define policy for facility rental charges

PAT FRIDGEN

What to charge whom is a question the Greencastle-Antrim School District school board is deliberating. The matter is working its way through several meetings as the board and school staff try to determine which organizations should be charged for using campus facilities, and for what services.

On Nov. 3 board members Paul Politis, Kristy Faulkner, William Thorne, Eric Holtzman, Howard Ritchey and Joel Fridgen viewed a list of categories. Brian Hissong, Mike Shindle and Melinda Cordell were absent.

Superintendent Dr. C. Gregory Hoover broke down organizations and their purposes. They are: A. School-sponsored student organizations. B. School-related organizations. C. Community nonprofit groups. D. Outside organizations.

The fees could be as follows: No facility rental for A, B or C. However, A would get charged for food service staff, B for food service and custodial staff, C for custodial, stage crew, security, food service staff, electricity, consumable supplies, damages to facilities and other such costs. D would have the same charges as C plus a facility rental fee.

Each group

A non-inclusive list of organizations in each category are:

A. First Steps to Learning, Apple Festival, Autumn Festival, County Band and Choir, school clubs, indoor guard competition and summer band.

B. Booster club meetings, class reunions, G-A MAAX, indoor field hockey, sports camps.

C. Youth sports programs, Minstrel Show, Dash for Drew, Old Home Week, Scouts, Relay for Life, service organization fundraising meals, meetings.

D. Chambersburg Cardinals, Clarissa’s Dance.

Talking points

The board saw that categories B and C were a gray area, with some overlap. The B group was directly related to school sports teams, and usually money for events went back to the booster clubs, which benefited students. Coaches tended to sponsor the sports camps.

Hoover said if an event charged admission, that could be a deciding factor on rental rates. He also said if an activity was a private enterprise and the host kept the participation fees, there should be a charge. The administration planned to present numbers on the cost of allowing use of facilities at the Nov. 17 meeting.

Athletic use of facilities

Several sports camps are conducted by school coaches over the summer. None were charged for use of the facilities.

Don Chlebowski, ninth grade football coach, and other middle school coaches, hosted the South Central Football Camp. They have averaged 90 to 100 kids each of the past four years. Children in grades 7-9 paid $60, and elementary $50 for the five day camp.

None of the coaches took a salary, including guest coaches from Shepherd University. Proceeds of the camp each year go to a scholarship fund at Shepherd, Greencastle-Antrim Midget Football Association, and the school program, funding football equipment and player accessories such as socks.

Gary Martin, high school varsity boys basketball coach, held the basketball camp for the first time last summer. Forty children paid $100 for the five-day camp, and others $20 for a one-day clinic in the fall. Martin was the only coach and was not paid, and had assistance from high school players. The money went into a coach’s fund, not to the booster club. Martin will decide how it is spent. He said maybe it would go toward the player activity fee or toward camps.

Brad Rideout, former high school girls varsity basketball coach, ran a camp two years. The first time 30 girls turned out, and this year it was 45. He held several four-day sessions with a charge of $80 for older players and $40 for the younger, and took a salary. Some team players assisted him. The balance of the proceeds went to each helper with $50 in credit toward shoes.

Booster clubs

The active rosters of booster clubs varies. The number of parents involved for each sport are estimated at boys basketball, six; girls basketball, one; football, 12; soccer, six; and baseball, 12. Independent organizations serve two other sports. The Greencastle Flyers contribute to track and field and cross country needs, and the Takedown Club supports wrestling. No true booster clubs exist for volleyball, field hockey, softball and track, but parents have helped as needed, school officials reported. Coaches are active in some clubs, but not others.

The school does not have any oversight into how money from camps or fundraisers is spent.