Supporting the April 2, 2019, Bond Initiative
Proposed Resolution -- Springfield (MO) Council of PTAs
Whereas, a task force comprised of 31 community members, parents, students and Springfield Public Schools (SPS) educators studied the current condition of SPS schools and evaluated the most critical improvements needed; and
Whereas, a $168 million bond initiative would make possible much needed facility renovations and improvements recommended by the task force that will result in safer and stronger schools for students and staff; and
Whereas, proposed renovation and new construction will allow for additional access to early childhood education; and
Whereas, the previous SPS bond initiative failed with a 51% approval rate and this proposed bond initiative will need a four-sevenths (57.14%) majority to pass (as required by state law); and
Whereas, PTA has historically advocated for school safety and recommends evaluation of access points to the school and surrounding property; and further recommends examining on a regular basis the use, functionality and effectiveness of all locally determined security measures; and
Whereas, PTA has historically advocated for quality child care and preschool programs that are affordable and accessible, coordinated at all levels (federal, state, and local), and ensure quality in teacher training, health, and safety standards; and
Whereas, outmoded facilities and obsolete technology are not conducive to the quantity and quality of teaching and learning with implications for the attainment of educational outcomes expected by the local community in preparing students to be competitive in a global workforce; and
Whereas, there is a well-documented relationship between the quality of a community's public education and the quality of life and economic prosperity of its citizens.
Now, Therefore, Be It Resolved, that the Springfield Council of PTAs supports the bond initiative as a necessary measure to achieve safer learning environments that support 21st century teaching and learning in Springfield Public Schools; and
Be It Further Resolved, that PTA members be encouraged to promote support for the SPS bond initiative between now and April 2nd; and
Be It Further Resolved, that PTA members encourage voter turnout for the April 2 election to all voters in the SPS attendance area.
Currently 77% of SPS schools are over 50 years old and 85% were determined by third party building evaluators to be in fair, unsatisfactory, or poor condition. More than 2 years ago, the district began a process to identify the most pressing school building needs, rank them in order of importance, seek community input, and develop a sweeping master plan.
After several months of study, a community task force of 31 members (parents, students, and SPS educators) studied the current condition of SPS schools and evaluated the most critical improvements needed.
If voters approve the April 2 ballot issue of $168 million, funds would be used for the following projects (to be completed by the end of 2022):
· 31 school entrance improvements
· SW region Early Childhood Center
· Delaware Elementary (new construction on current site)
· Sunshine Elementary (renovation)
· Boyd Elementary (new construction on a new site in the Midtown neighborhood)
· Williams Elementary (renovation)
· Jarrett Middle School (new construction on current Portland site – Portland students will attend renovated Sunshine Elementary)
· Hillcrest High School (renovation)
Bowerman, Delaware, and York will continue to be used as elementary schools.
Schools not identified for significant projects will continue to be maintained through routine maintenance funded by the district's capital projects budget.