Red Clay voters to weigh in on new sc...

Red Clay voters to weigh in on new school today

There are 1 comment on the News Journal story from Feb 28, 2012, titled Red Clay voters to weigh in on new school today. In it, News Journal reports that:

The Red Clay Consolidated School District capital referendum on the proposed construction of a new elementary school and renovations to dozens of other schools is today. The school district, which has seen growth in some suburban schools while enrollment has dropped in city schools, seeks to build a new 600-seat elementary school off Graves Road near Hockessin. Red Clay's referendum is a two-part ballot question. One question asks voters if they want to raise property taxes to collect $7.8 million in local money to build a suburban elementary school. The second question is for $39.1 million in local money to make repairs to about two dozen schools. Some residents have noted that there are buildings in the district below capacity and that overcrowding would be alleviated by redrawing feeder patterns rather than building a new school. District officials, however, say a new elementary school is needed because suburban schools are crowded. The district could redraw school boundaries, but officials have defended its decision for a new school by saying redrawing feeder patterns would be disruptive and could result in the loss of some programs in city schools. The average taxpayer, with a home assessed at about $75,871, would pay an average of $44 more a year, a 3 percent increase, if both proposals are approved. This increase would be in effect only for the life of the bond used to pay for each project. Similar to a mortgage, the tax increase would end when the government bonds used to finance the projects are repaid. Typically, bonds have a life span of 20 years. The state would also pay a share of the project. The spending is part of the state's fiscal year 2013 bond bill. At a Monday morning hearing for the education bond bill -- which includes more than just Red Clay -- legislators didn't have many questions for Secretary of Education Lillian Lowery and her staff. Senate Education Committee Chairman David Sokola, D-Newark, asked department leaders why Red Clay reported school capacity numbers that included program capacity. Lowery noted that the district began an alternative education program and pre-k at Warner Elementary School, which created need for more space despite lower enrollment numbers. District spokeswoman Pati Nash said class sizes at Warner are lower than other schools, which also makes it appear as through there's extra room. Sokola said he understood the issue at Warner, but the numbers were still not clear on some other school numbers. 'There are some others that I am scratching my head at,' he said. Lowery said she would have her staff send more information to Sokola. The state Department of Education vets district-provided information before certifying that there is a need for a new building. Once the state agrees that there is a need for a new school, the issue goes to voters for approval.

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Philadelphia, PA

#1 Feb 29, 2012
No. And no. Thanks. There is no need for a new school, but they figured a way to skew the numbers to show a need. Shame on them! Redrawing the boundries may be disruptive? Awww. They will get over it. And how does changing the boundries effect the education in city schools?

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