Negative balance student lunch accounts is a global issue and one that nobody seems to have an answer for, according to Brandon-Evansville school officials.

Vicki Ellis, Brandon-Evansville business manager, told school board members at Monday night’s regular meeting that there are negative balances but they are not as big as other districts.

“We don’t have that big of a problem here,” she said. “We have really good families here.”

Superintendent Don Peschel said because of the goodwill of the people in the community, as well as some organizations, the school has received donations to help with the negative balance lunch accounts, as well as to pay for student meals.

So far this year, the district has already received two donations. The amounts were not disclosed at the meeting.

Because the district wants to have consistency with the donated funds, the school board approved a policy/procedure for donations designated for student meals. The purpose of the policy is to define how the donations are to be distributed in a fair and practical manner.

The district will attempt to follow the wishes of the donor first. School officials will then work together to identify those students, families or groups of students with significant needs that can use the donated funds.

The policy also states that the donations will be recorded as a separate deposit so they can be included on the list of donations accepted by the school board. In addition, it states that the district will keep a proper audit trail.

Moving forward

A brief discussion took place about the district’s facilities. A meeting will be set up with the facilities committee to discuss options for how the district can move forward after this month’s failed referendum.

“We need to talk about options and need to discuss where we go from here,” said Peschel.

The facilities committee will also work with the construction group on the district’s indoor air quality project that will be taking place next year.

Because he wanted to focus on the positive, Peschel said the air quality project is going to help, but it will not solve the district’s space issue. This is why he will be setting up a meeting with the facilities committee.

He said more discussion and information could be shared at the December board meeting.