At Monday's board meeting, Young proposed funding 13 projects, most of them start-up or pilot projects, or one-time equipment purchases. The money cannot go into the district's general fund. The final decision will be up to the board at a later meeting.
"We have looked at some of these programs in the past, but we couldn't fund them," Young said.
The largest allocation could go to jump start the school resource officer program set to start during the 2007-2008 school year. The district's estimated cost for the first year of the program is $86,500. Another $100,000 could be invested in treasury bonds.
The money could also fund the first two years of a Jessamine teacher planning tool, and a Chinese teacher program with Bluegrass Community and Technical College and Asbury College that would bring two teachers from China to teach the language and culture to college students and to high school students for college credit. Elementary students could also get some instruction.
"We hope its a way we can really open up Jessamine County to the economic boon in China, and all the things that are expanding economically in China," Young said.
Young proposed the purchase of a $50,000 digital video system for school buses that would replace an outdated videocassette recorders, an online application process for prospective employees for $30,000, a car for the new drivers education program, intramural funding, and $40,300 to put interactive whiteboards in each school within three years.
"It (the proposed plan) is really heavy in technology, and we feel like this is a real tipping point for us to move into a more high-tech approach to what we do," Young said.
The district might also contribute $25,000 to construction of a greenhouse at East Jessamine High School. The school has secured a $41,000 grant from the state Agricultural Development Board, but the school board must match the funds to receive the money.
There are also plans to hire agriculture teachers for East and West Middle schools.
"They have found it is a great, real life way to get students interested in and hooked on science," she said. "It is kind of the lens through which the students study science in a real way."
The board will also consider setting aside for a college transition program for at-risk students, helping them earn up to 60 hours of college credit and a high school diploma in five years. In a joint venture with Fayette County Schools, Jessamine County is applying for a grant through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the endeavor.
"It is trying to capture students that would otherwise not be on track for post-secondary education," Young said.
The grant would pay startup costs, but not tuition for students. Jessamine students pay $80 for a three-hour course at Bluegrass Community and Technical College, where the classes would be taught. Young has suggested earmarking $75,000 to cover tuition.
The Jessamine County Board of Education meets next on May 7 for a work session.