Electronic sign at school nearing reality, public asked to help reach goal
Tuesday, August 05, 2014 11:03 AM
Here’s your sign.
A computer-generated rendition of the proposed electronic sign for Kingsland school.
“It’s a Kingsland thing…it’s what we do here at Kingsland. We work together…we make things add up,” such as the money needed to erect a new electronic sign at Kingsland schools, said Kingsland Athletic Booster Club (KABC) member Stacey Rath.
The money designated so far adds up to an amount close to what is needed, but the Booster Club is inviting the public to join in the effort to raise funds to place an electronic message sign in front of the elementary and high school building in Spring Valley. For any donations over $100, a plaque with the donor’s name will be placed on the sign.
Kingsland Superintendent John McDonald said the district is cooperating with KABC now to make the proposed sign a reality, something that will stop traffic and make passersby say “Hey, there’s my sign!”
In 2008, the sign was intended to be in the proposed referendum, but because of budget and costs, it was taken out of the budget, he said. School board members have been pursuing fundraising efforts to accomplish that vision set six years ago.
Former Kingsland School Board chairman Mitch Lentz said, "We had a sign in the project that would be on a cement base with being able to be read by traffic from the north and south sitting right where the memorial garden is now. There was a plastic pipe buried to pull the power and data cable to the sign as we were all hoping to still be able to get the sign back in with all the volunteer work and donations for support."
School administration has raised funds through donations from private parties and alumni classes while speaking at class reunions. Yet, the approximately $15,000 raised was still far short of the goal of $39,700 needed for the project.
The school recently contacted the Kingsland Athletic Booster Club to help with funding this project. The KABC board voted to donate $14,000 to match the efforts of the funds already raised to help complete this project.
That still left the fund-raising effort $10,800 short of the project cost. After conferring with the Booster Club, the Kingsland School Board, at the July 21 meeting, approved a plaque for the sign identifying organizations, businesses, classes and individuals who donate $100 or more.
McDonald noted the installation of a message sign on the elementary and high school grounds would serve to improve communications.
“One of the Kingsland School Board’s approved goals from its strategic plan is to increase accountability between school, community, parents and students by communicating events, opportunities, student performance and programs, improving communication, partnerships and community involvement,” said McDonald. “An electronic message sign would provide parents, students, community members and visitors with real-time information about school activities and schedules. Outdoor display signs are the perfect advertising tool that openly invites anyone to attend a Kingsland sporting or activity event, as well as promoting school spirit, recognizing outstanding achievements or simply to extending a warm welcome.”
This would be an asset not only to the school, but to all the Kingsland communities, added McDonald. Information would be displayed about current and upcoming events occurring at the schools, improving school communications beyond Facebook, e-mail, letters and advertisements, as a service to the community. The sign is “designed to foster community pride by displaying information pertaining to our earliest learners to senior high students.” Community Education programs and opportunities would also be displayed through continuous presentation.
Rath related that “donations have been trickling in” since the announcement that the district is working to install a sign, and KABC pledged $14,000 to help defray the expense. However, she noted, they “need to get serious on this project, so we are seeking community support,” doing some fundraising in the next few months to raise $10,800 before the deadline of Oct. 1.
“We want the Kingsland district to be involved as much as possible in this fundraising event. First, during Ag Days, who wouldn’t want to dunk your favorite principal, school board member, coach or other community members in a dunk tank? Come to South Park and give it a whirl,” said Rath. “Second, try your hand at bingo...we will be working bingo at Racks Bar & Grill on Sundays, starting at 4 p.m. as part of our fundraising efforts. So, not only can you win money, we will earn it too!”
The dunk tank is a cooperative effort between the school and the KABC.
Rath went on to say, “We want to let the community show their support and be acknowledged for it. We will take any donation amount — it is greatly appreciated — but any person, group or organization that donates a minimum of $100 will get recognized on the sign so in years to come, your support will still be appreciated. This is a great way to be part of the school no matter who you are, whether you’re alumni or in memory of a loved one or a gracious individual. It will be part of Kingsland history for a long, long time.
“We have so many people to thank already for the fundraising that has already been done. There are many who are not involved with the Kingsland community anymore and are still giving. So if you know of anyone who is interested in donating, please share this information. Any donations can be mailed to Kingsland Schools.”
To donate, send to Kingsland Public Schools care of the Kingsland district office, 705 North Section Avenue, Spring Valley, or be sure to participate in KABC activities at Racks or Ag Days.