The Morris Community High School District 101 Board of Education took time to approve the acceptance of various donations during its meeting Monday.
“We’re extremely grateful to have the community support,” Superintendent Craig Ortiz said. “We really appreciate it, whether it’s $100 or $1,000. Every little bit helps.”
The district received four donations ahead of Monday’s meeting. This includes a $100 contribution to the student council, a 2005 Chrysler van estimated at $2,600, payment valued at $1,560 to the athletic program, and a $3,500 grant to pay for STEM classroom equipment.
The Morris Downtown Development Partnership extended $100 to the district’s student council, whose members utilize funds to attend leadership conferences and sponsor school dances and other events during the year.
The Chrysler van donated by Mr. and Mrs. Alderson Morrison, and will replace an older vehicle that the district plans to retire. Ortiz said one way the vehicle will be used will be for short trips to neighboring districts where shared service agreements are in place.
The $1,560 contribution by Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers will go toward the district’s athletic program. Those funds, which were payments in the amount of $20 each made by student-athletes to receive physical examinations, were donated back to the district.
“I think it’s an opportunity to make it more accessible,” Ortiz said. “Going to the doctor, I imagine, [costs] more than that. It gives them a convenient way to come here. Sometimes it’s available here through our nurse’s office.”
Ortiz said the district has received this donation for several years, but couldn’t be certain if student participation in sports has increased over the years due to support provided by Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers.
The $3,500 grant issued to the district by the Community Foundation of Grundy County will help provide for STEM classroom equipment. Among the items to be bought include tables and monitors.
“What our teachers did is they wrote a proposal for some furniture, equipment and supplies needed for our STEM program,” Ortiz said. “That doesn’t cover everything, but it covers part of it.”
The district is currently in the second year of its STEM program.
Ortiz said the classroom equipment is hoped to provide a space for students that is more conducive to collaboration.