Clovis Schools hires education foundation consultant

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

Clovis Municipal Schools is one step closer to creating an education foundation.

Members of the Clovis Schools Board of Education entered into a contract with education foundation consultant Pete Karabatsos Tuesday during a board meeting.

A private foundation can support a range of school programs. Foundations have supported the purchase of hi-tech equipment for classrooms, scholarships and innovative ideas generated by teachers, according to Karabatsos.

A Clovis Schools Education Foundation would lobby for private funds once a year, Seidenwurm said.

Of the foundation, School Board President Mark Lansford said, “It’s a win-win, especially for the kids.”

Clovis Schools will pay a one-time fee of $17,500 for Karabatsos’ services, according to Clovis Schools Superintendent Rhonda Seidenwurm. Expenses he incurs in travel to and from Clovis, including airfare, lodging, vehicle fees and food, will also be paid by the school district, she said.

For one year, Karabatsos will consult with foundation members, visiting Clovis monthly and advising members by telephone and e-mail, Seidenwurm said.

“He (will) basically hold our hands for a full year,” she said.
Karabatsos said his work has led to the creation of 80 foundations in Texas.

Seidenwurm said excess cash balances in the schools’ budget will support Karabatsos’ services. Though the budget was tight this year, she said conservative spending left the district with enough money to hire Karabatsos.

At Tuesday’s meeting, board members also:

• Listened to Seidenwurm’s recommendation to hire a Web master for Clovis Schools and invest in a computer program that would display student progress online. Seidenwurm said extra cash balances could pay for such initiatives. No action was requested by the board on such recommendations.

• Discussed the timeline for math and arts textbook and curricula adoption. Instructional material will be recommended to the board in January.

• Set date and time for the next board meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 10 at 1009 Main St.