Board Approves Referendum for November 6 Ballot

Swallow School Board Approves Resolution for Referendum on November 6th Ballot
Posted on 07/30/2018
This is the image for the news article titled Swallow School Board Approves Resolution for Referendum on November 6th BallotThe Swallow School Board of Education approved a resolution for a referendum that will appear on the general election ballot on November 6. The proposed $8.3M referendum will have zero tax increase on district residents due to retiring debt. While the referendum includes a reduced version of the initially-proposed plan provided to residents in the spring, the goals of the referendum align to the District’s values of placing students first, continuous improvement, community engagement, fiscal responsibility, and respect and honesty.

School Board President John Stahl commented, “We listened to feedback provided by the community from the FAC, Community Conversations and the survey. We worked with our partners and have come up with a plan that will have no tax increase and can provide the community with a much-improved facility to better support learning.”

The referendum will assist the district in continuing to place students first by allowing the district’s annual budget to provide staffing levels the Swallow community is accustomed to and additional support resources to personalize the learning experience for each child.

Learning in today’s world involves dynamic hands-on learning experiences, collaboration and varied technologies. This referendum allows for continuous improvement through building renovations that support updates to curriculum, programming, and instructional methodologies.

The existing building’s features and design limit community engagement. This referendum creates a fully accessible (ADA) building with improved safety and security features while also increasing the number and type of spaces available for community groups’ use beyond the school day.

The District has worked diligently to be fiscally responsible by restructuring the 2004 referendum debt for early repayment, completing more than $2 million in capital improvements since 2010 via the district’s annual operating budget, and building the district’s fund balance to avoid short-term borrowing.

“There comes a time when you have to weight the benefits of replacing the aging sections of the school versus continuing to put money into sections that will only need expensive continuous improvements over the lifespan of the facility. The public expressed concern over losing the history of the older sections of the building but didn't want to place the financial burden on the school for its upkeep. We are working with the architect to ensure portions of the existing building, such as the iconic bell, can be repurposed into the design of the replacement portion of the building” continued Stahl.

In mid-August residents will receive district newsletters and mailings with information about the referendum and opportunities to participate in Open Houses. More information on the Long-Range Master Facilities Plan and School Board meeting agendas can be found at  http://www.swallowschool.org/board_of_education.
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