At every Paly home football game, the pep band and the cheer and dance teams play an invaluable role in rallying the crowd and giving Paly the home field advantage.
However, these groups do not benefit from the tickets sold at football games, despite playing an important role in entertaining spectators.
The Campanile thinks funds raised from sporting events should be distributed among the various groups that perform at these events.
Currently, the allocation of athletics funding is overseen by Sports Boosters, a volunteer organization run by Paly parents.
According to Athletic Director Therren Wilburn, Sports Booster fundraise every dollar the athletic department spends on uniforms, transportation and budget.
This year’s athletic budget is $365,000, so Sports Boosters is responsible for raising the money. Wilburn said he works with Sports Boosters closely in deciding where the money is spent and how it is allocated.
Money raised from football games does not automatically go towards the football program.
Instead, it goes towards the Sports Boosters’ general fund.
For example, at last Friday’s football game, Paly made $5,000 at the gate and snack bar, according to Wilburn.
This money is put into a general fund and, inevitably, every team does reap the benefits of football.
The Campanile commends Sports Boosters for their efforts and also recognizes they have no jurisdiction over Paly Dance.
The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) does not recognize dance as an official sport. According to Dance coach Alana Williamson, since dance is not recognized by the CIF as an official sport, Paly does not recognize it either.
Therefore, Sports Boosters does not use funds from its general pool to support the team and Dance does all its funding on its own.
According to Williamson, she understands the situation, but wishes something could be done about it.
To fix this problem, The Campanile suggests that a portion of sales from football games be set aside before the remaining money is transferred to the general Sports Boosters fund.
Half of this set-aside money should be given to dance and cheer and the other half should go to band.
This system of distribution would compensate every group involved with football games and recognize their efforts.
While band has its own volunteer group, Paly Music Boosters, to help raise funds, providing them with a percentage of revenue from football games would also be the fair thing to do.
Band plays in an important role in contributing to the overall excitement and experience of home games.
Despite having an independent funding structure, added revenue would help pay for new instruments, for example.
The potential problems arising from taking funding away from Sports Boosters can be addressed in a variety of ways including asking for more funding from PAUSD. Wilburn said he wouldn’t share Sports Boosters contact information with The Campanile, so we weren’t able to get their reaction to this proposal.
Football games and other sporting events allow Paly students to celebrate their school pride as well as support their friends in athletics, cheer and dance and band.
The Campanile urges Paly to adopt methods that ensure that all groups involved at these events receive adequate funding that reflects their value to the school.