Available green space at Rush Elementary School, Hometown, might come in handy for a Tamaqua area sports program.

At a Tuesday evening workshop of Tamaqua Area School Board, Raymond J. Kinder, assistant superintendent, outlined a request from the Girl's Softball Association.

The association applied for a prestigious 'Baseball Tomorrow' grant, which it would use to establish a new field for the softball teams. The grant amount would be in the $10,000 to $11,000 range, but there are set rules for the use of this field, which includes the fact that no other teams, such as soccer, may use it. It would be strictly for use by the softball/baseball teams.

Kinder said that there is no point in changing the existing field at Tamaqua Area Elementary School, which has had plenty of effort and work put into it, and that the association had to find a different location for a new field. In turn, the association found that there was space available at Rush Township.

There is work to be done at this area, he said, including the trimming of trees and the removal of brush which surround the site. The school board looked favorably on the application for the grant. However, they will not know if it has been successful until October of this year.

In other matters, Superintendent Carol Makuta updated the board on developments related to changes in how small games of chance licenses are to be issued.

Makuta said Jeff Bowe, Esq., district solicitor, researched new state mandates and determined that booster clubs must establish a 'master booster' organization for securing a small games of chance license, and that the new group must be incorporated as a nonprofit organization.

In terms of precedent, school boards are still trying to find their way with the new mandates. Makuta said it appears that no such applications have yet been made among Schuylkill County schools. The board will try and determine if any applications have been applied for statewide.

In other discussion, the board is expected to accept the first reading of a weighted grades policy.

The board also is expected to approve an agreement with Blue Mountain Area School District to accept occupational therapy services for a minimum of 78 school days per year for the years 2012 to 2015. The cost will be prorated pending existing salary, benefits and fees associated with employing the therapist.

The finance committee is expected to authorize a $2,500 donation to the Eastern Schuylkill Recreation Commission and a $3,500 donation to the Tamaqua Public Library.

In other matters, the board received a request from resident Matt Hope to use the triangular piece of school property on Stadium Hill for the 2012-13 school year.

The board will act on these and other items at their regular meeting scheduled for Tuesday, July 17, at Tamaqua Area Middle School.