Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

June 11, 2013

Altamont Parents pitch private funding to reinstate baseball

Jackson Adams
Daily News

---- — ALTAMONT — Like parents in other school districts, parents in Altamont who desire to see sports, particularly baseball, continue proposed privately funding the sport Monday.

Parent Anita Ziegler told Altamont school board she had spoken with other parents and 20 potential fall baseball players about how private donations could bring back the sport.

Superintendent Jeff Fritchtnitch said the main expectation for private funding would be to cover the stipend for coaches, as well as paying fees for officials. The district also would need a guarantee at least nine students would be involved in the activity.

"What we expect is you to be able to cover that," he said. "We'll still cover the transportation."

Although the district would not provide formal transportation if baseball were reinstated through private funds, the district would provide a vehicle for coaches who can drive a bus for up to 13 students — the maximum number that would stay within the district's liability insurance. Mileage would also be reimbursed.

Ziegler said more than enough parents and students had expressed interest in being a part of the team and helping to raise funds for the program. She also said she believed interested parties could raise enough money to bring the fall team back, with $4,300 already raised.

"I have confidence we can raise the funds," she said.

Formal fundraising requests and further information about bringing back the program could be presented as early as the board's July meeting.

The board also went over results to standardized tests and statistics from the end of the school year. Grade School Principal Doug Hill said the school had recently received the results of ISAT testing from the state and are still combing over the results and hope to present the findings by next month's meeting.

"We're still in the process of figuring out what we've got," he said.

Fritchtnitch also spoke about the schools' continued use of the one-to-one technology program. He said the district will have to purchase an additional 20 computers for next year. He also said he had additional plans for further integration of technology into the program. For now, he said he was extremely pleased with the way the program has worked so far and would not change anything about how it was initially implemented.

"We are not having any where near the problems other places are having," he said.

Jackson Adams can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 131, or jackson.adams@effinghamdailynews.com.