As I told one staff member a couple a weeks ago I would put us up against any school. We have a good thing going.

It doesn’t matter what the state or federal government come up with, we are always up to the task. It does not matter if they call it Common Core or Iowa Standards, we will work hard to make sure the kids are getting a good education with multiple opportunities for success.

One of the major issues the School Board is looking at right now is how to keep up with the growing demands of our aging facilities and equipment. We have been doing the best we can to fix, replace, and add facilities and equipment that makes it a better place for your children and grandchildren to go to school.

The learning environment is so important to a good education. This is why the school board regularly seeks input on facilities from the School Improvement Advisory Committee (SIAC).

The board uses this prioritized list to make changes in the district. Members also use their best judgment on other smaller items if needed.

The community has been fantastic in supporting the needs of the district through taxes and fundraisers and we definitely appreciate that. However, the rate at which those funds come in, the inflexibility of the use of state funds, and the lack of growth of state funds has put a damper on our progression of facilities improvement.

That is why the board is currently looking at the facilities needs list and exploring ways to finance these future items.

Right now as taxpayers in the district you are paying a total of $1.69 + $.33 = $2.02/$1,000 of assessed property value for facilities and equipment improvements.

At the end of the 2019-20 school year the elementary building will be paid off, which is bonded at $1.69/$1,000.

Right now the board has an approved non-voted Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL) that is $.33/$1,000.

For the 2020-21 school year your rates could drop to $1.69, or you could approve an additional Voted PPEL of $1.01 for a total of $1.34/$1,000. That would still save $0.68/$1,000 on your taxes down from a total of $2.02.

These extra funds would allow us to take care of facility and equipment needs at a faster rate.

This would be limited to ten years of increased PPEL collection.

This would allow us to take care of items, such as updating windows and doors throughout the district. It would also allow for much needed fixes on the building roofing, flooring, lockers, updates to the high school commons area, etc.

These are things that need to be done but we currently do not have the funds to do them at a fast enough rate.

Thank you for your consideration on this issue over the next couple of years and watch for opportunities give input to this option or possibly others.

You could also take time to have discussions with your School Board or myself about this.

All of our contact information can be found on our school website.

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