To the editor:
A few reflections I have about the mail-in ballot on the proposed USD 428 bond issue to improve the schools in Great Bend.
Our three children were all raised in Great Bend and received excellent educations in the elementary, middle and high school!
a. They were never harmed by a tornado hitting our schools. (They were lucky – consider children injured/killed in tornados hitting Moore, Okla. and Joplin, Mo. in the recent past!
b. They were never injured/killed by a crazy/mentally ill shooter with an automatic rifle. (They were lucky – few events as such ever happened in the ’70s or ’80s when our kids finished Great Bend High School).
The bond issue will address the safety issues that will create secure main entrances at all eight school buildings. It will install intruder hardware on all classroom doors in all buildings. (This simply means that all classroom doors will be lockable from the inside by simply hitting a button lock rather than fumbling with a keyed lock outside (hallway side) of the door as it is now which would be scary and dangerous should an active shooter be in the hallway outside that classroom!
The bond issue will pay for new pre-K children’s size play equipment to be added to already state-of-the-art school playgrounds. (In the past much playground equipment has been funded by the schools’ PTAs and maybe funded similarly.) Worn out existing playground equipment will be replaced as needed.
The bond issue will be paid for by a 13.5 mill ($13.50/$1,000 accessed valuation of our property) for question 1. However, remember that the previous bond issue for 5 mills ($5/$1,000 accessed valuation) was paid off in 2017. The 13.5 mill proposal is only 8.5 mills ($8.50/$1,000 accessed valuation) higher than the mill levy for school improvements that we were paying in 2017 and previous years!
I say again, “what value do you place on the safety of your children in our public schools?”
Please join me in voting “yes” for the USD 428 bond issue!
Terry N. Turner, DVM