PPIE Run for Education raises $85,000 for public schools

Foundation fundraising expected to save a few positions from district layoffs

With its annual fundraising race complete, Pleasanton Partnerships in Education (PPIE) Foundation is calculating what it will be giving to Pleasanton schools, especially in light of upcoming layoffs.

PPIE's Run for Education raised $85,000 during the April 17 event. A total of 3,068 runners and 300 volunteers filled downtown Pleasanton for various-distance runs to raise money for Pleasanton's public schools.

That mission is particularly important this year, organizers stated, with the district leaning on organization donations to fund some positions that were fueled by one-time state funds that were not renewed.

"Since the 2008 recession, the schools saw an impact to the money they receive from the state," PPIE Run for Education co-director Bryan Gillette said. "Giving students and teachers access to resources such as literacy coaches or technology coaches makes a difference and allows our schools to gain top educational awards. And when the schools do well, the community does well."

PPIE pledged to dedicate $360,000 of its total 2016-17 donation to fund the salaries of four district instructional coaches, and the organization is working on calculating the final amount, PPIE executive director Susan Hayes said.

The foundation will notify the district sometime in May with the final Giving Fund amount. Hayes said the total will certainly cover the four instructional coaches, and additional fund could be used for other positions, technology needs or program needs.

The overall state budget is also subject to a May revise, which could affect how many positions the district can fund. A total of 25.9 permanent full-time equivalent certificated positions, 53.4 temporary full-time equivalent certificated positions and 19.5 full-time equivalent classified positions were approved by the school board for layoffs at the end of the school year if other funding sources aren't found.

The Run for Education, which included a course that looped through downtown Pleasanton, drew families from across the Tri-Valley. Gillette said he was pleased to see so many young children running with their parents.

"I have heard that other races are seeing a decline in their participants while we are seeing the opposite," he said. "It teaches kids the value of exercise. So many of our health-related issues could be solved by moving more. So, getting kids exercising early on builds this into their daily routine later in life."

He said the race raised as much money as the organization expected when making funding predictions. Next year's run is scheduled for April 23.


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