Town of Fraser pledges $50,000 to help keep schools open |

Town of Fraser pledges $50,000 to help keep schools open

Reid Armstrong
Sky-Hi News
Fraser, CO Colorado

FRASER – Town board members here pledged $50,000, Feb. 16, to help “buy a year” for Fraser and Grand Lake elementary schools.

Six of the seven board members gave a thumbs up to the proposed charitable contribution. Board member Steve Sumrall questioned the legality of the action and argued that the school district should find the $1.2 million in savings from within.

But the other board members were swayed that the survival of the elementary school is critical to the town’s long term economic viability.

Fraser’s contribution brings the total amount of pledges to date to roughly $380,000, said East Grand Education Foundation president Ron Nelson. Pledges include $75,000 from the Town of Winter Park, $20,000 from Grand Lake, roughly $177,000 from the county (yet to be approved), $10,000 from the ski resort, and $50,000 from the East Grand Education Foundation, a donor advised fund of the Grand Foundation.

The total amount the community would need to raise to buy the year is $500,000, Superintendent Nancy Karas said. If the community can show that level of commitment, she added, the district will consider contributing $500,000 from its reserves, which would leave it in a precarious situation with only one month’s worth of funding in the bank.

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The remaining $200,000 shortfall would be achieved through cuts identified by the District Accountability Committee.

Karas told the Fraser town board that the school district will review the community pledges and consider how to proceed when it meets March 1.

She added that district plans to make its final decision on the DAC recommendations when it meets March 29.

– Reid Armstrong can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19610 or

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