Aspen school board eyes changes to donor-recognition policy |

Aspen school board eyes changes to donor-recognition policy

After months of deliberation and seeking feedback from the community, the Aspen School District Board of Education is in unanimous agreement that changes should be made to its donor-recognition policy.

The school board will discuss how it plans “to move forward in writing the proposed policy” at its board meeting Tuesday, Board President Susan Marolt said Friday.

The board’s current donor-recognition policy was adopted Oct. 7, 2013, and states that the superintendent shall not recognize donors or contributors, whether individuals or businesses, via any tangible, permanent method.

The policy, which was implemented by a former board, according to Marolt, also states that the superintendent shall not permit the display of temporary forms of recognition unless the display is directly related to the support of middle school or high school athletics; is located within a middle school or high school gym or athletic field; is visible only during athletic competitions that are open to the public; and has met the guidelines established by the superintendent with respect to appropriateness of subject matter, service or product.

“For the most part, (the board) could all agree that we would be comfortable with a donor-recognition wall at some point,” Marolt said.

She said the board members’ unanimous agreement on this comes following the results of a survey that the board conducted earlier this year.

The four-question survey, which was sent out to the community in late April, was created in an effort to gauge people’s thoughts on the issue of recognizing donors. Feedback from the survey, which the board reviewed and discussed at a board meeting in June, revealed that more than half of the participants would support the school district in visibly recognizing donors who contribute significant financial gifts to the school.

The discussion of donor recognition arose in late March of this year, when the Aspen Education Foundation, a nonprofit fundraising arm of the Aspen School District, suggested the board revisit the possibility of recognizing donors.

Board Vice President Sandra Peirce and Board Secretary Sheila Wills, who will be out of town for Tuesday’s meeting, drafted a proposed donor-recognition policy that the board will begin to work from at Tuesday’s meeting, Marolt said.

The Board of Education meeting is scheduled to take place at 4 p.m. on Tuesday in the board meeting room.

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