School Committee Guards Middle School Sports Program
Half of the $106,000 allocated to the middle schools' sports programs are paid for coach stipends.
East Providence School Committee members voted to not eliminate the middle school sports program, during Thursday night's meeting at city hall.
Members Chrissy Rossi, Ryan Tellier and Chairman Charles Tsonos voted to keep the programs.
"Our job is to educate the entire student [body], not just academically but socially," Tellier said. "It's the reason why many students come to school."
The extracurricular activities cost approximately $106,000 annually; half of the funds pay for coach stipends. According to Mary King, mostly teachers double as coaches and make about $2,500.
Member Stephen Furtado was the only "no vote." He said community organizers like booster clubs could help raise funds, noting towns including Barrington and East Greenwich taxpayers do not pay for their middle school programs.
"The [funds] are for the adults not the kids," Furtado said. "Honestly we're looking for ways of getting the job done without costing us."
According to Mary King, once a sport is eliminated from the school department's budget, adminstrators cannot become involved in fundraising efforts.
Interim Superintendent Edward Daft did not contribute to the motion.
The budget commission has authority to line cut department budget items.