BOCA RATON, Fla. - The new Olympic-sized pool at Boca Raton High School is making a splash. It seems a lot of groups are willing to pay for a chance to use the sparkling new facility and that money is having a welcome ripple effect for the school district's budget.
Lease agreements are multiplying, and the school is collecting payments.
"Anything we can fill the pool with will offset the cost and provide a great venue for the area," says Boca Raton Community High School Swim Coach Eric Hill.
Already the school has had three customers, which has generated almost $8,000. Coach Hill is working to bring in three colleges to lease the pool over the winter. Each university could bring in $3,000.
Half of the money brought in goes to the Palm Beach County School District.
"They own the pool and pay the electricity and water bills, and consume more of the cost," says Hill.
30% goes to other Boca Raton schools, with the remaining 20% going to Boca Raton High.
The pool is more than a money maker, it's a classroom. Students have a chance to get their lifeguard certification, something that wasn't available on campus before.
"Without the pool we wouldn't be able to do a lot of things here," says Sean Gautney, a recent BHS graduate.
Hill estimates the pool could generate upwards of $80,000 in one year. That would cover the cost to operate and maintain it, so the pool could end up paying for itself.