Radio thon Held to Raise Money for Midland School District

February 3, 2006 -- Posted at 5:06 p.m. CST


BATESVILLE, AR -- From $0 to $400,000:  that's the goal of the patrons of the Midland School District.


Citizens in this community have banded together, raising the money needed to pay the debt owed by their school.


WRD Entertainment hosted a radio-thon on Friday to benefit the Midland School District.


The school is in financial distress.  The Arkansas Board of Education has stepped in and taken control of the school replacing the superintendent, and disbanding the school board.


“I simply stood up and said, 'Look, we are where we are.  The real issue is where do we go from here to save the midland school district?,’” said community member Roger Hook.


In two weeks, the “Friends of Midland” have raised over three hundred thousand dollars.


“I'm having faith that we're going to have $400,000 and a plan in our hands that says we will be a solvent district,” said Midland parent Lea Ramsey.


Some members of the community have even gone as far as taking out loans to help raise money.  But even then, their efforts may fall short.


On February 13th the Arkansas Board of Education meets in Little Rock to finalize the fate of the school; and many members of the school district will be there.


There is a plan in place if the state doesn't accept the money the community has raised.


“In the event that the state doesn't accept our proposal to save the district, then this money that we're getting today will go to the Arkansas Children's Hospital,” said Ramsey.


Other donations will be returned to individuals.


So what keeps the school from running out of money next year?

Residents say this year; it was simply a case of mismanagement of money.  They say their school can make it on their own.


As of 6:00 p.m. on Friday afternoon, a grand total of $338,500 had been raised.


The deadline to have the money ready for the Arkansas Board of Education is February 13th.


That leaves the community with only ten days left to raise the money to save their school.