An “End of Year Field Studies” program that aims to send nearly seven hundred students to centers of art and science throughout the country was announced at the monthly ReNEW Schools board meeting, August 9.

The program, created by recently-appointed Development Director Pete Rodway, is designed to offer students  educational trips at year’s end to enhance their learning outcomes.

The board plans to ramp up fundraising efforts to underwrite the estimated $225,000 budget for the field studies trips.

Rodway said that the size of the budget guarantees “each student who participates in the program will have a well-rounded experience.”

The board plans to hold several fundraisers for the trips. The first will be a “Future Takes Flight” gala and silent auction scheduled for November 8 at the Batiste Cultural School Auditorium. At the event, each student participating in the field studies program will show a “boarding pass,” complete with a short biography of the child and the reasons they would like to take a specific trip. Patrons can donate any amount to support the child’s year-end journey.

In other news, Controller Tanya Bryant reported increased enrollment numbers at Reed, Sci Tech and Batiste schools. Most ReNEW schools are currently full or almost full. School officials are in the process of totaling final enrollment numbers.

Bryant also addressed concerns that some high school students have not yet shown up for classes that began July 23 according to the school calender. Students have cited lack of day care, inability to afford uniforms and transportation as reasons why they have not made it to school. The board planned to brainstorm ways to increase attendance among these students.