School District 27 staff are in the process of drafting a new policy for community use of schools.
An outline of what will be contained in the proposed draft policy was endorsed by the school board at its regular meeting Tuesday, March 31. Once the draft is finalized it will come back to the board for final approval.
The proposed policy states that given the district’s ongoing budget restraints it is not feasible to continue to subsidize community events that are not within the school board’s mandate.
Under the proposed new policy rental rates for community use of school facilities will be tiered with the minimum rate charged to be on a cost-recovery basis.
Categories will include the following:
Youth not for profit, unpaid instructor: Organizations registered under the Societies Act where the instructor/leader is not paid and membership is 19 and under.
Youth not for profit, paid instructor: Organizations registered under the Societies Act where the instructor/leader is paid and membership is 19 and under.
Adult not for profit: Organizations registered under the Societies Act and membership is open to ages 19 and older.
Private: Includes any group or person whose activities are not open to the general public, not registered under the Societies Act, or not operating for private profit, and individual School District employee use or groups led by a School District employee that do not fall under School District use or not for profit categories.
Commercial: Includes any entrepreneur, commercial agency or groups of agencies whose object is to gain profit.
Legal and liability issues were also reviewed with subsequent recommendation that the district maintain its responsibility for the custody, maintenance and safekeeping of all property owned or leased by the board by ensuring that school district personnel be present and responsible for the building facility any time a member of the public is present.
District staff will also do more work on a proposal to modify the rental agreement for smaller rural schools whereby the necessity to have school district personnel is waived in areas where evening custodians are not employed and participation is limited.
Trustees also commented regarding the sale of alcohol at community functions in relation to increasing use of school facilities and revenue for the district.