Members of the Dexter Marching Band breathed a collective sigh of relief Monday as the Board of Education authorized the purchase of new uniforms for the 2012-13 school year.
The board unanimously instructed Superintendent Mary Marshall to begin the process for soliciting contract proposals for the uniforms.
According to information provided in the board packet, the district will fund approximately 270 band uniforms with an estimated cost of $115,000; 15 tuxedos for the orchestra at an estimated cost of $2,500; and approximately 120 choir robes at an estimated cost of $25,000.
In September 2011, Dexter Band Booster representatives petitioned the board for funds to replace the 17-year-old uniforms, many of which they said were being held together with duct tape.
"Uniforms for our band, orchestra and vocal programs are in desperate need of replacement; however, the cost of this replacement is more than the general fund budget can support," Marshall said. "I am confident that the request by the band, orchestra and vocal programs represents a real need. The band and vocal uniforms are beyond their useful life."
Funding for the uniforms will be transferred from the district's reserve equipment and instruction fund.
Marshall told the board she has been working with band instructors to set up a replacement fund for future uniform expenses.
"Our goal is to begin now to save for future purchases once these uniforms surpass their useful life," she said.
One suggestion would ask parents to donate the required uniform deposit (which is currently refunded when a student leaves the program) to a permanent account. Within 15 years, funds in the account would pay for 80 percent of a new uniform.
In other board action:
- Chris Gordon was officially sworn in as trustee on the Board of Education. Gordon replaces Kim Covert, to accept a full-time position in the district. "I am honored to have the opportunity to serve on this board," Gordon said.