School Board and County Leadership Unite in Support of Better School Facilities
With two school funding measures on the November ballot, leaders of the Guilford County Board of Education and the Guilford County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) released a joint statement today in support of better learning environments for public school students.
The statement was signed by Board of Education Chair Deena Hayes and Vice Chair Linda Welborn along with Board of County Commissioners Chair Jeff Phillips and Vice Chair Alan Perdue. The statement reads as follows:
“As community leaders and elected officials in Guilford County, we stand united to support our schools. The time is now. We must join together to ensure that we have a safe and welcoming environment for our students to learn, grow and prepare for college, career and life. Strong schools create strong communities. Strong communities create a strong economy and a strong economy prepares us for a successful future. Visit Schoolbondfacts.com to learn more.”
Voters will consider a $300 million school bond as well as a quarter-cent, sales and use tax on the November 3 ballot. If approved by voters, bond dollars will be used for new school construction and renovations and to purchase land. The sales and use tax would generate approximately $19 million a year to help pay for new school bond debt as well as school maintenance and repairs. While state law does not allow ballot language to specify how these tax dollars will be spent, the BOCC unanimously adopted a resolution indicating its intent.
In keeping with the district’s Facility Master Plan and priorities, school facilities in the worst condition will be addressed first, with some adjustments made for construction phasing and swing space requirements while buildings are undergoing renovations or new facilities are being built.
The plan’s long-term goal is to improve each facility so all students can learn in safe, healthy and tech-ready classrooms and schools. While the $300 million bond issue won’t meet all of the district’s capital needs, it does represent an important first step, according to elected officials from both boards, which jointly commissioned an assessment of district schools and facilities.