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Archive for Friday, January 31, 2003

Even Barbie can pitch in for student fees at auction

January 31, 2003

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Need a mint condition "schoolteacher" Barbie?

How about a ticket to the Kansas-Missouri basketball grudge match?

Both can be had for a price Sunday at the Citizens for Students charity auction at Abe & Jake's Landing, 8 E. Sixth St. More than 300 people have bought advance tickets to the silent- and live-auction event.

"We have everything from Barbie dolls to computer desks to artwork -- $5 to $1,500," said Jackie Ferguson, co-coordinator of Citizens for Students. "There is something for everyone."

Rosy Elmore and Ferguson started the organization last year with a goal of raising $100,000 that could be used to help Lawrence public school students pay new fees.

The school board adopted a $50 participation fee for each sport, cheerleading or afterschool program a student joined. A $25 cocurricular fee was started for nonsports activities, such as debate, orchestra, choir and band.

Citizens for Students set up a system to funnel tax-deductible donations to the school district, which is in charge of determining student eligibility for grants from the fund.

Ferguson said the program obligated students to pay their first participation fee and first cocurricular fee.

The goal is to raise enough to cover the second and third fees in each category, she said.


On Sunday, the silent auction starts at 6:30 p.m., with the live auction at 8 p.m. The fund-raising target for the auction is $40,000.

"That is what we're shooting for," Ferguson said. "But it's not so much the dollar amount, but the number of kids we can help."

She was uncertain how many students already have received support from the fund, but about $24,000 raised by the group has been allocated through the program.

"Everybody has been very supportive," Ferguson said. "It's been what keeps us going -- knowing that we have the support of such a diverse group of people. They want to help ease the burden a bit."

Another goal of forming the Lawrence group is to raise awareness about state funding of public schools.

"It's helped raise awareness about the Legislature not holding up its end of the bargain," she said.

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