Could Corporate Sponsors Bring More Money to Schools?

By WISE Web Admin
By Megan Trent

January 11, 2011 Updated Jan 11, 2011 at 7:50 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - Company logos on sports jerseys or on a school bus? Indiana's NewsCenter took a local look at a national discussion that's gaining momentum.

In some ways, we've already been seeing this sort of thing. Company logos are on the walls of gymnasiums, pamphlets at programs, school fairs, and booster clubs.

Administrators with East Allen County Schools say community organizations and businesses also sponsor programming and internships through their Educational Foundation.

In the Fort Wayne Community School district, business professionals are occasionally called in to talk with classes. Not only does this give students an insight into that particular career, officials say, it also cuts out the need to hire substitute teachers in those circumstances.

That's what this is about - brainstorming ways to create new revenue sources in a time where school budgets are being slashed.

Rose Fritzinger with the EACS Educational Foundation says, "We are looking outside the box. We are looking to organizations to support our various programs which will help our students. Among the many ideas are support for sponsorships."

Krista Stockman with FWCS says, "We are open to additional funding sources if that's a possibility - if somebody wants to give us money. There are some limitations by state law. For instance, we can't have advertising on school buses, those kinds of things, but we're always open to alternative funding sources."

So, how far do officials foresee this going? Officials say even something as big as naming rights for buildings can't be ruled out, but those larger decisions would need to be discussed and approved by the school board.

There is also some concern about which donors to associate with. Officials say they primarily work with businesses that are local right now, but they are also extremely careful about making those decisions.

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