October 1, 2014

Elyria
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Keystone hopes bus comes from can-do effort

LAGRANGE — The community is donating everything from cans to scrap metal to some really offbeat items in hopes of raising a substantial sum of money to go toward a new school bus.

Miller

Some folks have become quite creative when it comes to donations, according to Margaret Miller, transportation supervisor for Keystone Schools who got the drive going last fall.

“We’ve had a hot water tank or two, and a man just called today about dropping off a grill,” Miller said Wednesday as she gazed over the bags of cans and other items heaped up in two large yellow, hand-painted wooden crates outside the district’s bus garage next to Keystone Middle School.

Begun in September by Miller and bus mechanic Anthony Rourkela, the drive has generated roughly $5,000 from donated items made up largely of aluminum and steel cans collected daily from the district’s elementary, middle and high school cafeterias, as well as regular donations by local restaurants.

The district ultimately looks to seek matching funds from grants or other sources for whatever is collected through the can drive.

There’s a long way to go, considering the average price of a new school bus is around $80,000 these days.

“We’ve been really fortunate,” Miller said. “We get calls to go get stuff … goofy things … but it all adds up.”

Contact Steve Fogarty at 329-7146 or sfogarty@chroniclet.com.