Ketchikan’s school board has appropriated $80,000 for sports after administrators warned that several teams were in the red. The board unanimously approved the transfer Wednesday to support football and volleyball along with boys’ soccer and boys’ basketball programs.

Administrators say the cash was drawn from accounts for vending, concessions and other surplus funds. 

Interim Superintendent Beth Lougee, who’s held the job since late last year, says some of the shortfall was from when the football team changed leagues. She said staff was looking into the origins of the other shortfalls but said it would try to prevent it from recurring.

The board also voted to renew a contract with the German conglomerate Siemens for its building monitoring systems. The district will spend around $140,000 a year to coordinate fire safety, building security and heating and cooling systems. 

Students from the Tongass School of Arts and Sciences, a Ketchikan charter elementary school, also attended the meeting. TSAS Principal Marian Gonzales told the board that faculty had met with Alaska Native teachers to find ways to integrate more Alaska Native culture into the elementary students’ lives. 

To highlight that, Gonzales, along with students and faculty led the board and audience in traditional Tlingit chants. Gonzales also said TSAS had integrated Alaska Native culture into their school routines by leading the school in weekly chants during the morning announcements.

This article has been updated to clarify that the above-mentioned activity fund transfers went into the boys’ basketball and boys’ soccer accounts.