By Dave Fidlin

Correspondent

After struggling for several years, a fund earmarked for recreation programs within the Waterford Graded School District’s operating budget is back in the black.

WGSD’s School Board on July 31 approved the financial statement for Fund 80 – the section of the budget cordoned off for recreation activities.

In Waterford, WGSD is the governing agency tasked with overseeing recreation activities for the broader community. Depending upon the community, school districts or municipalities handle the task of overseeing low-cost recreation programs for students and adults.

District Administrator Ed Brzinski said WGSD’s Fund 80 account has reversed course, compared to prior years. At the end of the district’s 2016-17 school year budget, it netted a $23,621 profit when revenue and expenses were factored into the equation.

“We’re financially positive,” Brzinski said as he combed through the report at this week’s board meeting. “We’re very excited about that.”

What’s more, WGSD has been able to build up the recreation department’s fund balance – the amount set-aside in the reserves for unforeseen expenses that might crop up.

By the end of June, Fund 80 had a $36,165 fund balance. The year prior, it stood at $12,544.

In recent years, WGSD has scaled back on some of its recreation offerings to stem operating losses that have occurred in prior years.

Because Fund 80 is once again in a positive-moving trajectory, Brzinski suggested it might be a good opportunity to revisit the issue. Surveying parents has been suggested as one possibility in gauging future programming efforts.

“What have we been missing? What can we bring back,” Brzinski said. “Now that we have a baseline … we can move forward. It’s been a lot of work, but we’ve had a good year.”

Despite the positive buzz, Brzinski said WGSD is not resting on the laurels, as evidenced by the possible survey.

“We’ll reflect and will try to do better,” he said.

In other business this week, the WGSD School Board:

  • Approved a donation from the Woodfield Elementary School PTO. The organization has offered a $1,570 contribution toward the school’s science, technology, engineering and math curriculum.
  • Green lit several summer maintenance projects, including early childhood playground equipment from Gerber Leisure Products. The work, which will take place in the weeks leading up to school’s return, have been capped at $43,000.
  • Issued final approval to sell a strip of land at Evergreen Elementary and Fox River Middle schools as part of the state Department of Transportation’s imminent reconstruction of highways 83 and 20.

DOT is slated to begin the extensive project, which will cut through the heart of the Village of Waterford, in 2019.

  • Discussed the ongoing review of Fox River Middle School’s future, in terms of space needs and other important issues linked to how future incoming students in grades 7 and 8 could learn within the walls of the school.

Brzinski has been meeting with a consultant to look into financing options for the school spruce-up. Further details are anticipated at the next COW meeting Monday.

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