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School district receives tech, sports donations

by WHITNEY ENGLAND
Whitefish Pilot | May 19, 2021 1:00 AM

The Whitefish School District received multiple donations throughout April including for technology and sports programs.

The Whitefish School Board last week unanimously voted to accept the donations.

One came from the Whitefish Community Foundation which totaled $174,750 for a computer science enhancement program for the school district.

According to the district’s director of technology Jacob Phillips, there are two parts to the proposal. The first includes a focus on professional development for staff and also a more in depth learning experience for the students. The second part involves the actual renovation of the innovation lab and production room space at the high school.

“We’ve got those two different parts that we’re hoping to address with this partnership with the Whitefish Community foundation and their donation,” Phillips told the board.

According to Phillips, currently the space is divided and is difficult for full classes to use the technology there effectively. The technology department is reenvisioning the space and adding new technology with this donation. But in addition to adding new gadgets and equipment, it was key for Phillips to be able to include the extra training needed for all to use it to its potential.

“We’re really excited about that piece of it; I love technology but I hate to see it just kind of thrown at people,” Phillips said. “I want there to be training and support behind it.”

The space supports technology education for grades K-12 and the classes that use it most currently include music technology and media art.

In addition to the donation from Whitefish Community Foundation, the high school also recently received two donations for new football helmets and jerseys. One donation of $5,000 was from the Bulldog Booster Club and another donation of $10,000 was from Blaine Platt.

The donations are expected to be used to obtain high quality helmets and an extra set of home and away uniforms.

“A good quality football helmet is in the close to $400 range for each one, so they are expensive but they are the ones that have the highest level of protection,” Whitefish High School principal Kerry Drown told the board.

According to Drown the helmets are designed to last 10 years and are sent in to be examined and recertified every year.

Drown also added that a donation of $8,750 cam directly to the high school for the “Gear Head Project.”

This donation was from the Whitefish Education Foundation in association with Stumptown Art Studio for the collaborative student and community sculpture project that is currently being built on the pathway from the high school to the CSE building.

“It’s all part of the April splendor and support, so thank you to our donors,” Drown said.