School Districts provide facility space for community groups and individuals to rent for a variety of events and activities. In most cases, facility rentals are handled by the local Community Education department. Typically rental time is limited to non-school hours and renters are subject to the Facility Use Policy and fees which are determined by each district. Facilities can include, but are not limited to, classroom space, meeting rooms, cafeteria/kitchen, theaters, gymnasiums, pool, and outdoor athletic fields/courts and multi-purpose spaces. Many school districts make equipment available for a rent as well. This can include microphones, tables, chairs, AV equipment, risers, and athletic equipment.
School Districts are allowed to rent out district property according to the Minnesota State Statute 123B.51.2 and the Minnesota School Board Policy #902 which states that “the School Board may authorize the use of school facilities by community groups or individuals. It may impose reasonable regulations and conditions upon the use of school facilities as it deems appropriate.”
Community members/groups to connect with could include local youth athletic associations, religious organizations, city government, police and fire, and local clubs/organizations.
Building Supervisors/Monitors are often hired by School Districts to provide security, support and customer service for rental groups. These are in addition to district custodial services at an additional fee.
Building Supervisors/Monitors typically go through a training process that would involve the following: how to provide customer service, safety and emergency management, district building open and lock-down procedures, minor maintenance, event set-up and clean-up.
Building Supervisors/Monitors are scheduled as needed, based on facility rentals and event supervision needs. They are equipped with access to the event schedule which would include the event location and other details regarding the event.
Facility Use Fees are determined by each district. In most cases, fees are broken down into categories based on the user groups (i.e. non-profit/for-profit, government, local youth group, in-district user, etc). Rental fees are based on the space being used as well as the size of the event. Typically groups are charged an hourly rate per space rented. Additional fees could include event supervision, custodial services, food services, technology support, equipment rentals, permit fee, rebilling fee and cancellation fee. Some districts require full or partial payment prior to the event. Others will bill the user once the event has concluded.
Many districts have now gone to online Facility Use Request Forms. Users are allowed to view the Facility Use Calendar and determine whether or not the space they are looking to utilize is available. Interested users can then send a Facility Use Request which will go directly to the Facility Use Coordinator/Manager. Some districts still utilize paper request forms. Once a request has been approved, the user would receive a confirmation email/phone call along with a Facility Use Permit. Included in the permit is a waiver/agreement portion that would need to be signed and returned by the user group requesting the space.
Most districts require a minimum amount of time to process requests. Priority is given to School District and Community Education events. All other requests are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. The only time this policy may be compromised is when dealing with athletic associations, which in most cases, priority is given to in-season sports.
Theaters/Performing Arts Centers are available to rent but may need additional support staff to ensure equipment is used properly and to assist with any outside concert, production or presentation.