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School bus ads a possibility for NLRSD | News

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School bus ads a possibility for NLRSD
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NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - On Wednesday, the North Little Rock School District finalized its budget for the next year, accounting for its loss in desegregation funding. 

The discussion of budgets has left its administrators searching for alternate sources of revenue, and after this year's legislative session, its superintendent thinks he's found one. They're looking to sell ads on their school buses. 

This year legislators passed HB-1495, which would give schools the option. The state is still crafting rules, but the superintendent is all for it. Studies suggest the average person sees 5,000 ads a day. 

“Well, I think it's the way we do business now in schools,” said NLRSD superintendent Kelly Rodgers. “I think advertisement on buses would be great.” 

The North Little Rock School District has yet to discuss the possibility with its board, but Rodgers says he’s optimistic about the possibility. 

“You know we're already using advertisements in our stadium,” he elaborated. “We need all the revenue we can get.” 

 

One of the most basic questions is where on this school bus can the ads go? Official rules have not been set just yet, but a draft says they can only go on the back quarter panel, basically limiting it to behind the rear tired. The ads can't be more than 30 inches tall or 60 inches wide. So then the question becomes, what can go there? 

“Well I don't think advertising anything indecent would be [ok],” said Grandmother Charlotte Sherrod, whose grandson is in 10th grade. 

No tobacco, no alcohol, but what about political ads? 

“We'd have to be very conservative with what we put on our school buses,” Rodgers said. 

Superintendent Rogers says he doesn't know. The school would have to consult its legal team when developing its policies. But he does know one thing, the money generated would be valuable and timely. 

“You know, we've got competition for schools, charter schools, private schools. So, for sources of revenue, we have to have competition too,” he said. 

The draft rules by the state board say money generated would need to go towards the district's transportation fund, but those could change. The district says it will have a formal meeting about the possibility of the ads within the next month.

 


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