The continuation of the Ethos Music Program is up in the air, it was noted at the Dec. 9, 509-J Board of Directors meeting.

The Portland-based Ethos program sends music students, who are also AmeriCorps volunteers, to teach music in underserved rural areas. The program has been a real bargain for the 509-J District, since it pays only $7,000 per Ethos instructor, much less than the cost of a full-time teacher.

“Ethos Music was a three-year grant program and we are on our third year,” said Superintendent Rick Molitor.

Ethos instructors have offered programs and after-school lessons on various musical instruments at Buff Intermediate, Warm Springs Elementary, Madras Primary, and Metolius Elementary. This year, Warm Springs was not able to secure an Ethos instructor.

“The program has been an amazing success, and other districts have continued to work with Ethos after the grant ran out. But Ethos may be having funding problems next year,” Molitor said, noting they may not have their AmeriCorps status continued.

“We would love to see the music program continue, especially with the Performing Arts Center being built,” Molitor said.

Mascot selected

A mascot and colors for the new Warm Springs K-8 Academy was selected by board members. The mascot will be an eagle, and the colors will be red and white. To get ideas, a student competition was held (among kids who will be attending there) and an eighth-grade boy submitted a drawing of an eagle and eaglet which won the judges over.

Several donations were accepted by the board: a Cultural Coalition grant of $900 to fund National History Day activities at Madras High School; a $1,000 grant from Wells Fargo for the MHS book/movie club; a Grammy Foundation grant (as in Grammy Awards) of $2,000 for the MHS music program; and an Oregon Community Foundation grant of $12,000 for the MHS track program for travel expenses and supplies.

Survey results from the recent Impact Aid hearing in Warm Springs are being continued, as the website survey wasn’t working correctly. The parent survey will be discussed at the next meeting.

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