Education Funding

State Officials Find S.C. School Bus Ads Elusive Pot of Gold

By Katie Ash — February 12, 2008 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Advertisers eager to begin pitching their wares aboard South Carolina’s public school buses are hoping that districts will participate in a program that would let them do so for a fee—as long as state lawmakers don’t throw up a roadblock.

The program, already put into place by the South Carolina Department of Education, could generate as much as $3.6 million for the state and participating school districts in its first year, estimates SAC Inc., the Warrenville, S.C.-based vendor picked to provide the advertising.

The ads would be “totally at [each district’s] discretion,” said Donald Tudor, the school transportation director for the state education department.

See Also

See other stories on education issues in South Carolina. See data on South Carolina’s public school system.

But until the legislature approves a proposal that would let the state share the revenue with participating districts, the program is unlikely to be picked up, said Mr. Tudor. Currently, the money generated from the ads could only go to the state—and legislation blocking any change already is pending.

Just as well, some activists say.

“Schools should not be trying to capture young consumers en route to class,” said Jeffrey Chester, the executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, a Washington-based public-interest group concerned with digital communications and advertising.

The state program allows ads to be placed inside buses, above the windows. Advertisers could include businesses, colleges, and the military, Mr. Tudor said.

The state also has already set restrictions: no tobacco products or alcoholic beverages, for example. Participating districts also would create oversight committees with authority to further restrict and approve ads.

But as a money-making venture, the program is far from a reality. A proposal to share revenue with school districts died in the state House of Representatives’ ways and means committee, and a bill pending in the state Senate would ban advertising on school buses.

“We have several options for modernizing and fully funding student transportation in South Carolina, … and we do not need to do it on the backs of our children,” said Sen. Greg Ryberg, a Republican and sponsor of the proposed ban, in a statement last week.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the February 13, 2008 edition of Education Week


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
What’s Next for Teaching and Learning? Key Trends for the New School Year
The past 18 months changed the face of education forever, leaving teachers, students, and families to adapt to unprecedented challenges in teaching and learning. As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How Data and Digital Curriculum Can Drive Personalized Instruction
As we return from an abnormal year, it’s an educator’s top priority to make sure the lessons learned under adversity positively impact students during the new school year. Digital curriculum has emerged from the pandemic
Content provided by Kiddom
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Leadership for Racial Equity in Schools and Beyond
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal systemic racial disparities in educational opportunity, there are revelations to which we can and must respond. Through conscientious efforts, using an intentional focus on race, school leaders can
Content provided by Corwin

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Funding Interactive Look Up How Much COVID Relief Aid Your School District is Getting
The federal government gave schools more than $190 billion to help them recover from the pandemic. But the money was not distributed evenly.
2 min read
Education Funding Explainer Everything You Need to Know About Schools and COVID Relief Funds
How much did your district get in pandemic emergency aid? When must the money be spent? Is there more on the way? EdWeek has the answers.
11 min read
090221 Stimulus Masks AP BS
Dezirae Espinoza wears a face mask while holding a tube of cleaning wipes as she waits to enter Garden Place Elementary School in Denver for the first day of in-class learning since the start of the pandemic.
David Zalubowski/AP
Education Funding Why Dems' $82 Billion Proposal for School Buildings Still Isn't Enough
Two new reports highlight the severe disrepair the nation's school infrastructure is in and the crushing district debt the lack of federal and state investment has caused.
4 min read
Founded 55 years ago, Foust Elementary received its latest update 12-25 years ago for their HVAC units. If the school receives funds from the Guilford County Schools bond allocation, they will expand classrooms from the back of the building.
Community members in Guilford, N.C. last week protested the lack of new funding to improve the district's crumbling school facilities.
Abby Gibbs/News & Record via AP
Education Funding Can Governors Really Take Money From Schools Over Masks?
State leaders are using the threat of funding cuts as a weapon in the mask debate—but it's not clear if they can or will follow through.
7 min read
Conceptual image of hundred dollar bills with some of the images of Benjamin Franklin masked.
Vanessa Solis/Education Week and iStock