Brandywine joins marketing effort to attract funding

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The Brandywine Board of Education voted unanimously to participate in the America's Schools Program at Monday night's school board meeting, a decision that could lead to additional funding in the future.
Interim superintendent Gary Campbell brought up the idea at the last meeting and explained it further last night.
The America's Schools Program is a corporate marketing initiative, in which the school agrees to use the America's Schools logo and in return could receive funding for educational programs.
The program is very new and was created to eliminate corporate advertising in schools.
The program does not cost the schools anything, but they must use the logo on their letterhead and display the symbol somewhere in the school to indicate that the school supports the program.
The symbol will also be displayed by participating corporations on their marketing materials and/or products. This will allow consumers to be aware of which corporations support our nation's schools.
The money raised by the America's Schools Program through the corporate use of its logo will be distributed to the participating schools on a per pupil basis.
Campbell said Brandywine, like many of Michigan's schools, is facing problems due to dwindling resources and thinks it is a good opportunity for an outside source of funding.
Campbell said the additional funding is not guaranteed because the program is so new.
In other business, Brandywine Schools director of finance Gus Damaske talked about the status of the facility improvement project.
After reviewing the project with a construction management firm, they found the project to be about $200,000 over budget. To compensate for this, Damaske made recommendations for some construction plans to become alternates.
With the alternates in place, the project is now $65,000 under budget.
Damaske explained that the alternates could still be included in the facility improvements if the construction bids come in at a low enough price.
Some of the alternates include ceiling improvements at all buildings, playground equipment at Merritt Elementary, parking lot improvements at Brandywine Elementary and a media center addition at the middle school/high school.
Damaske said the district hopes to receive bids by early April with construction to begin shortly after.
The board also approved an overnight field trip for three Brandywine wrestlers who qualified to advance to a state competition in Auburn Hills.

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