Scoreboard ads for the Glenbards?

  • Glenbard High School District 87 is considering advertising on its scoreboards, including the one on the Glenbard North High School football field.

    Glenbard High School District 87 is considering advertising on its scoreboards, including the one on the Glenbard North High School football field. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

Posted7/11/2012 5:30 AM

Glenbard High School District 87 officials predict the district could bring in $100,000 every year by attaching LED advertising panels to existing indoor and outdoor scoreboards at the district's four schools.

They say it could help fund the district's athletics or other programs.


But first, they're looking for the public's feedback to see if the district should even consider advertising on school grounds.

A survey posted on the district's website this week asks community members if they support advertising on LED boards at athletic contests, as well as temporary or fixed ad signage on scoreboards and fences adjacent to athletic fields.

The survey, available until next Monday, comes in light of a proposal to place a total of eight LED boards throughout the district -- one for every football and basketball scoreboard at Glenbard North, East, South and West.

District officials have had preliminary discussions with iHigh, a website that streams live Glenbard athletic events, about facilitating advertising sponsorships for LED scoreboards as well as Glenbard's iHigh website. iHigh has agreements with about 500 school districts nationwide for similar services, according to Rod Molek, Glenbard's assistant superintendent for human resources and student services.

The LED boards would cost the district about $187,000 to install. The district would receive all ad revenues until the initial investment is paid off, or until the start of the third year of a eight-year contract with iHigh, whichever comes first.

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At that point, a revenue sharing arrangement would go into effect with the district getting 80 percent of revenues and iHigh getting 20 percent.

At a district finance and facility committee meeting last month, Molek said companies are particularly interested in advertising at football games, where there's a "potential captive audience" of about 4,000 in some cases.

He said advertising on boards would be turned off after games, but the district could use them for its own promotional use any other time. He also said the advertising would be "nonintrusive."

Advertisers would sign a minimum two-year deal with iHigh, though the district would have the right to refuse any particular advertising.

It's not the first time the district has looked into advertising on scoreboards. Last year, Glenbard officials talked with representatives from Side Effects, Inc., an Ohio-based company that secures sponsorships from advertisers to help fund new scoreboards. Under one proposal, Glenbard would have split advertising proceeds with the company. And at the end of a 10-year deal, the district would have a total of $208,995 in revenues.

At the time, Molek suggested soliciting proposals from other vendors to find more favorable revenue estimates.

The school board is expected to discuss advertising further later this year.

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