December 4th, 2013
Selling ads on school buildings wins early backing
By Troy Graham and Susan Snyder
City Council moved Tuesday on a long-percolating idea to raise money for the School District of Philadelphia - by selling advertising space on district buildings. The chief sponsor of the plan, Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown, noted that large school districts around the country already sell ads on schools and buses. She said selling ads here would provide “much-needed revenue” for a district grappling with a $304 million budget shortfall.
“So imagine, like in California, a West Philadelphia football field paid for by Nike,” she said before the Rules Committee approved her bill. Word of the bill’s advance prompted expressions of support in some quarters and dismay in others. One parent warned of ads becoming children’s “unwritten curriculum.”