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Donations mean improvements for district

"SUQUAMISH - Suquamish Elementary principal Joe Davalos has seen changes in his school over the years, and many of those changes have been for the good. Two years ago, the school could afford to expand the playground. Last year, they purchased televisions and VCRs for half the classrooms. Next year, Davalos said, they hope to do the same with the remaining classrooms. We're one of the few schools that doesn't have TVs and VCRs in every room, Davalos said. We just bought them when we could and pushed them around on carts. The money for the TVs and VCRs last year came from the school's PTSA, and that money was donated by parents and individuals. It's always from varied sources, Davalos said. People who really have a sense of what it is we're trying to do try to contribute in any way they can. He added, I feel very fortunate. But Suquamish Elementary is not the only fortunate school. Every North Kitsap school receives money and items from donations. According to a report just given to the school board, the total value of donations for the last school year was $296,500.83. People and businesses donated computers and software to go with them. They donated books, lumber, and cans of paint. A unicycle was donated, as was one trumpet. Many of the funds were raised by the PTSA of each individual school. The funds, Davalos said, go toward just about anything he can think of. They go to help offset the costs for virtually everything we do. They're all related to students, of course, he said. They go to assemblies, teacher equipment, teacher supplies. They go into the budget so I can re-allocate for salaries of classified staff. They go for copying costs. They go to purchase tapes, records or televisions. We have actually even started programs or continued them (because of donations). One of those programs is the Meaningful Work program, where students have jobs that teach them responsibility and discipline, as well as the solution center, which is used to resolve problems with students. Helen Hoover, who sits on the NKHS school board, was impressed as she looked over the list of total donations. I think the PTSA has done a lot of work. I really think that's great what they've done, she said. Another impressive feature, Hoover pointed out, was the donation of computers by Washington Mutual Saving Bank. The computers were valued at $182,810. "

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