SAD 46 will support home repair group next summer

DEXTER — The SAD 46 Board of Directors authorized Superintendent Kevin Jordan to enter into an agreement with Group Mission Trips — a non-profit, interdenominational Christian volunteer home-repair group — to host a summer workcamp again next summer. 

The motion came during an Aug. 25 board meeting in the Ridge View Community School gymnasium.

Last month, 80 teenagers and adults from around the country spent close to a week in Dexter working on 13 home projects at no cost for area residents who otherwise could not afford to have the needed repairs made. Participants stayed at the Ridge View Community School, while Group Mission Trips covered expenses such as food and kitchen and custodial staff.

“They came back this summer with far fewer students and they really want to fulfill their pledge with 250-plus students,” Jordan said. He explained after first coming to Dexter in 2019 with 400 volunteers working on 60 projects around Dexter and adjacent communities, there was no work camp in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and this year’s featured smaller numbers of participants and sites.

Participants in the summer 2022 workcamp will also stay at Ridge View, as the SAD 46 school board approved hosting the visitors again during a meeting in the school gymnasium on July 14. When asked during last month’s school board meeting, Ridge View Principal Jessica Dyer said there were no negatives to having the Group Mission Trips volunteers stay at the school.

 “The only impact for us is scheduling, so we schedule around it,” she said, about summer programs taking place during different weeks.

The 2021 workcamp was sponsored by the town of Dexter and First Baptist Church, with assistance provided by a number of businesses and organizations. Youth volunteers came from New Hampshire, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indiana, and adult volunteers represented 10 states.

In the other business, Jordan reported that the budget committee met about two weeks prior to discuss the additional $238,000 in state subsidy coming into the district. 

“No decisions were made but the budget committee tossed around ideas that certainly we didn’t have the money to get done before,” he said. The superintendent said a finalized list of possibilities on how to use the $238,000 will be brought to a future school board meeting.

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