East Lansing voters will decide if a $93,770,000 bond proposal for schools will pass next Tuesday.
The bond issue would fund the construction of five brand new elementary schools in the East Lansing School District and re-open a sixth designed for 21st century learning.
“We can make a difference, and we need to because these are our kids, this is our community,” says Tali Hylen.
Hylen believes voting “yes” to the nearly $94-million bond proposal will do more than just improve the space her children learn in.
“We’ll continue to attract new families to this district that provides an amazing education for our kids, and we’ll be able to attract and retain our great teachers that have made due for far too long in sub-par buildings,” says Hylen.
If passed, Donley, Glencairn, Marble, Whitehills, and Pinecrest Elementary’s will all be demolished and rebuilt, designed to hold nearly 300 students per school. On top of that, the first $10-million of the millage, would renovate and re-open Red Cedar Elementary, which has been closed since 2014. An addition, those who oppose the proposal, think is too much.
“The idea of reopening a sixth elementary school when we have not been able to identify where the operating costs are going to come from is irresponsible frankly,” says Joe Borgstrom.
Borgstrom agrees, the district does need to replace the existing schools, but thinks voters should consider the overall long-term health of the district when it comes to Red Cedar Elementary.
“Our primary concern is how are you going to pay for the things you can’t bond for, which is the administration, but principles, the support staff, all of those things that go with an elementary school,” says Borgstrom.
Voters will have the chance to make their decision on May 2nd. If approved, it is estimated it would increase the tax bill on a $100-thousand home by $90 per year. If the bond passes, all construction should be complete by the Fall of 2021.