Ohio

Eye on Education

School District Threatens to Implode if Voters Don’t Approve Borrowing Money

One of many variations on a theme.

Comicbase / Flickr

One of many variations on a theme.

Pass this bond measure or your school district might implode.

That’s the implied threat one Ohio superintendent issued amid a campaign to get voters to approve a bond issue.

Canton Local school district superintendent Kim Redmond wrote in a fall welcome message posted on the district’s website:

We will seek voter support in November for a new Canton South High School (and minor renovations to Walker and FMMS). Doing nothing is not an option. If there’s no investment in our buildings, eventually dissolving our district might be the way to go.

Our enrollment is declining because families are choosing to live in other districts where the schools are safer, technology ready, and the building configurations meet the vision of today and the future.

Redmond later told the Canton Repository it is unlikely the district would be dissolved if the bond fails and that she was “unaware” that her message mentioned dissolving the school district.

The mention of dissolution was intended to “create a sense of urgency” around supporting the bond issue, Redmond told the Repository.

Canton Local isn’t the first district to make bond measures and levies high stakes decisions for voters.

District officials commonly say if voters reject ballot measures, the district may institute fees for extracurricular activities, cut art, music or foreign language classes, close some schools or cut back on busing.

What has your district told you about the consequences of rejecting a school ballot measure? If the ballot failed, did those consequences take place?

Comments

  • Mark J. Slutz

    I think Kim Redmond has the right idea. I’ve often wondered why Stark County needs 15 regular school districts, a joint vocational district (R.G. Drage), and a special needs school (Southgate-Eastgate, run by the Stark Board of DD). Do we really need 17 districts to serve the population? Could these be condensed into 6-8 entities? Oh, and I forgot–the Educational Service Centre on 38th Street, which doesn’t seem to do much of anything other than provide jobs for recently retired administrators.

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