The Winton Woods City Schools Board of Education has placed an operational levy, Issue #8, on the ballot for Tuesday, May 4, 2021. This levy would generate $3.2 million annually for operating expenses, which includes instructional services, maintaining all educational and extracurricular opportunities for every student. This is the first operational levy placed on the ballot since 2009.
This crucial levy will fund essential day-to-day operational expenses such as high quality staff, utilities, classroom technology for all students, supplies and equipment. “ There is often a source of misunderstanding regarding bond proceeds. Bond proceeds can only be used for brick and mortar, which constitutes the construction of new facilities. We are very excited that our taxpayers showed the love for our children, our schools, and community by passing the bond in 2016, and we are extremely grateful.
Winton Woods City School District has not had an increase in operating expenses (new money) since 2009, which equates to twelve years,” said District Treasurer Randy Seymour. “The average homeowner would pay around $20 per month, which equates to $243.25 per $100,000 market value per year.”
“This levy will also provide funding for key identified areas of need including the sustainability of our 5-star preschool program and all-day kindergarten, increased enrollment, additional school resource officers and the restoration of busing for high school students in the district. This will begin in August 2021,” said Superintendent Anthony G. Smith. There are consequences if the levy does not pass. Superintendent Smith says there will be severe cuts made in all departments, and extracurricular activities will be reduced. “Unfortunately, cutting educational and extracurricular activities during the pandemic would overwhelm our staff, students, and our community.
“In the 2016-17 school year, the district began to offer all-day preschool. The transition from half to full day services increased enrollment greatly and created an extensive waitlist. Passage of this levy would provide more services to our students as they enter our 5-star preschool program. “
With the opening of two new innovative campuses, the district’s top priority is safety. “We currently do not have enough highly trained school resource officers,” said Executive Director of Business Affairs Steve Denny. “We need a minimum of four school resource officers to support our two campuses. The levy proposal will enable the resource officers to meet all of the safety guidelines. We all know there are no substitutes for highly trained school resource officers to support this important student, staff, and community initiative.”
In the last four years, more students have become interested in the Winton Woods educational experience due to our quality academic programs.“We have grown as a district and need to expand our system to make room for additional students,” said school board member Gino McGowens. “This levy will help accommodate the increase in our student population that is well over 4,000 students. It is essential that we continue quality educational services for every student, in every seat, every day.”
Where do campaign funds come from? The district cannot fund the campaign to encourage residents to vote for this levy. However, a group of parents and community members has formed a committee called Citizens for Educational Progress and School Issues (CEPSI) to generate support for the levy that will be on the May 4 ballot. Our children, our parents, our community deserve the best to ensure Winton Woods City Schools will continue to become a proud district of destination.