Our school system has a dedicated and devoted group of citizens leading the Morgan Education Foundation. These men and women give of their time and talents to serve the students of our schools. Trustees include: Kelly Wright, Scott Deru, David Alexander, Bruce Galbraith, Daren Peterson, Becky Weeks, Diana Olsen, Deanne Johnson, Jerry Peterson, Melanie Moore, Scott Duncan, and Jennie Earl.
The Foundation’s mission is to unite the Morgan community in directing its efforts and resources to enhance the educational experience and pursuit of excellence of students attending public school within the Morgan County School District. Recent projects have included: an art restoration program, auction, and scholarship fund drive. Monies collected have supported student scholarships, U.S. Constitution historical displays, and teacher supply grants.
Recently, the Foundation has committed to raising $400,000 for the Trojan Century Center. The Center is a 46,000 square foot steel and brick multi-purpose physical education, health, and athletic training facility.
The Morgan County Board of Education has authorized $2.7 million in a federal stimulus bond along with $250,000 from their capital fund for the project. This amount completes the outside of the Center and the bare necessities inside the building. It does not provide necessary funds for classrooms, storage, mezzanine, portable seating, scoreboards, nets, basketball court and standards, etc., thus the urgency in the Foundations efforts.
If the Foundation is unable to raise the money, the board has indicated they would transfer up to an additional $250,000 from their pay-as-you-go fund for the court and storage areas. The board is reluctant to do this. They want to save the pay-as-you-go funds for future school sites and academic expansions of the existing schools.
The Center will be available to all Morgan students – grades kindergarten through twelfth grade. It allows the district to provide greater physical fitness opportunities for children. It also provides our competitive sports programs with additional training opportunities regardless of the weather conditions.
The Center has space for two additional classrooms. Morgan High grew by 4 percent this year and if the trend continues, health courses, medical science courses, and certified nurse assistant courses would be transferred to the facility which would be a natural fit for the Center. There will also be office and storage space provided.
Priorities will be to first serve the students during regular school hours, second provide practice time for the various school sports and extra-curricular teams before and after school, third allow usage by the various Morgan County Recreation programs for youth and adults, and fourth support public usage such as senior citizen walking times and open court times.
The facility will include a turf practice field, batting cages, surfaced indoor track, and a court suitable for basketball, volleyball, tennis, and wrestling.
The foundation is happy to announce that funds are already beginning to be received for the Trojan Century Center. Holcim Cement has graciously donated powder for the concrete in both the Center and the new transportation facility. Plant Manager Keith Krugh indicates this will be a considerable savings to the district. Operation Graduation has also committed $12,000 to the Center and perhaps more later in the year. Other local companies, families, and individuals have contacted the Foundation indicating their interest in helping as well.
On April 7, 8 and 9 the Morgan High School Boys’ Basketball Team will be hosting an alumni tournament. The first $1,500 from the event will go to their program with the balance being donated to the Foundation for the Center. Coach Jim Wiscombe is hoping to have 16 teams enter the contest. Trustee members Melanie Moore, Scott Duncan, Deanne Johnson, and Jennie Earl will be assisting Wiscombe in the management of the tournament. Other high school teams are also planning fundraising events for the Center.
Chairman Kelly Wright believes the community will rally around their efforts. “Through the generosity of the people and the wise use of funds by the board of education, the Trojan Century Center can be a first class facility we can all take pride in,” remarked Wright, “It’s good for our community and good for our kids.”
If you would like to donate to the Foundation or offer your services in the fundraising efforts, please contact one of the board of trustees or call Secretary Diana Olsen at 801-829-3411.