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Why we need a FUN-draiser…

February 17, 2009

With the $4.8 billion state shortfall, times are going to be tight for school districts this year.  A lot of time is invested in overseeing the budget at ARTech.  Come to any ARTech board meeting, and you see how financial matters consume a considerable portion of our evening’s work.  Rebecca, our business manager, presents a report each month that has already been scrutinized by the finance committee prior to the board meeting.

This attention to fiscal responsibility and planning is a good thing, for our budget is tight and projections for funding from the state are not encouraging.   Charter Day at the Capitol last week focused on lobbying legislators to consider the considerable impact a reduction in lease aid would have on charter schools.   We are hoping they are listening.     Currently, there is a law that prevents charter schools from owning their own building and charters like ARTech receive state money to lease space.   A reduction in lease aid would have a direct impact on the funding of our program.  Hopefully, the legislature will recognize that there is a need to continue to support a  publicly -funded educational movement that continues to offer educational choice.  The charter schools continue to grow in popularity in Minnesota.  Enrollment in Minnesota Charter Schools was 28, 034 in 2007-08, increased from 14, 245 in 2003 -04, the year that ARTech opened it’s doors to students.

Of course, school districts are not the only ones fearful of the economic climate.  You can’t open a newspaper, or turn on the TV news right now without encountering the words “recession” or “stimulus package”.     Although we need the money from parent donations, it’s a tough time to be out on the fund-raising trail to supplement our funding from the state.   I was amazed at the school community’s generosity at Thanksgive.  Now we are gearing up for the second phase of the year’s major fundraising drive – the ARTech Auction.

You may not know it, but the auction committee has been working towards this since back in November when we decided to try separating off Thanksgive and the Auction this school year.   The fearless three organizers are Sheri, Tracy and Marla.  Behind the scenes, they have been meeting, organizing, recruiting and gathering items for the auction.   Sitting in meetings with them, I’ve been astounded at how much work goes into an event like this.

There are many ways you can help our auction committee.  First of all, secure March 6 in your calendar. The auction is an adult-only event from 7- 10 PM at the Eagles Hall.   As the flyer proclaims, there will be “fun, food and frenzied bidding”.   Not only that, Todd and friends are providing the music!   Here are other ways the auction committee is seeking help:

Donate items for the auction.

  • Think about items you can’t buy in the store: handmade or baked goods, event tickets, trips
  • Get your kids in on the act: they can donate artwork, baby-sitting hours or yard work services
  • Turn your hobbies into services: cook for another family, offer a custom-ordered scrapbook page, help create a garden, provide music or singing lessons or a horseback-riding experience
  • Are you, or someone you know, a local business owner? Take advantage of those connections!

Forms and items can be dropped off at the school’s front desk (no later than February 25, please – we need time to put the catalog together).

 We also need assistance with a few tasks. If you can help with any of the following, please contact one of us:

  • Soliciting business donations
  • Providing an appetizer or dessert
  • Set-up and/or clean-up on the night of the event

If you have questions, you can contact the committee directly.   

Sheri Acosta   (645-6954)

Marla Erickson   (663-7952)

Tracy Goodwin   (645-4283)




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