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Tue, Dec. 10

PUSD readies marketing effort<BR>Will use civic center money to pay for promotion

PRESCOTT – The Prescott Unified School District Governing Board discussed a $35,000 marketing fund to increase enrollment for the 2002-03 school year at its study session Tuesday evening.

Superintendent Kevin Kapp stressed the fact that the money would not come from the district's Maintenance and Operations budget, but from other sources.

"The main point is that it will not be coming out of tax credits," Kapp said.

If the budget is approved, Kapp said each school would be asked to give its share of the money based on its student count. Most of the money would come from civic center funds, which is money the district receives for leasing and renting buses and schools, Kapp said.

Doreen Walker, the president of the Prescott Education Association and a Prescott High School (PHS) teacher, had one main concern with using mostly civic center funds.

She wanted to make sure that all of the money wasn't going to come from just a few accounts.

"What schools do the civic funds come from?" she questioned. "Is it proportional across the whole district or does it fall heavy on one school?"

Kapp said the primary schools providing money to the civic center money are PHS, Dexter Family Resource Center and Mile High Middle School.

"Those are the schools that are rented and leased more often, and they generate the most funds," he said. "These are the schools that are carrying the smaller funding schools."

Kapp added that these schools are "willing to share their wealth, as long as their needs are met," such as maintenance needs. The money for that will come mostly from the civic center funds, or from the Northern Arizona University (NAU) lease.

The NAU lease is money the university pays to lease Dexter School, which Kapp said amounts to about $70,000 a year.

Kapp said the district principals agreed Thursday morning that they use the suggested money.

During the meeting the district's marketing firm, which consists of Mary Jo Kirk from Kirk Design and Abbie Roses from Abbie Roses Communications, discussed what the money in the budget would be used for primarily.

"The greatest change would be a major upgrade to the (district) Web site," Roses said. "We want to make it graphically more dynamic."

PHS Principal Tim Carter pointed out that district-wide, one out of every two parents are "using technology to select a school."

Roses added, "We want to drive (parents) to the Web site so they can learn more."

Also at the meeting, the board discussed:

• A protocol and timeline for the hiring of a new principal at PHS when Tim Carter retires at the end of this year. The next few steps in the process include addressing the PHS faculty, a possible executive session with the board and the convening of a committee to begin developing questions for interviews of possible applicants and a rubric for paper screening.

• An update on bus stop waiting times. Cindy Brown, director of transportation, said they made a new schedule that enables elementary, junior high and high school students to be picked up six minutes later in the morning (7:06 a.m. instead of 7:00). Also, junior high and high school students are being picked up 20 minutes earlier in the afternoon.

Contact Rachelle Bump at rbump@prescottaz.com.

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