‘Yes’ to Everett’s school bond

Voters will weigh in again on the Everett School District bond that failed to reach the 60 percent threshold in February. A “yes” vote not only benefits current and future students, but signals to new residents and employers that district families put a premium on K-12 education.

For voters, the charge is to separate the sometimes-acrimonious politics of the school board from the educational needs of area children. To sandbag a bond over the handling of the district’s new administration building is cold comfort to students requiring more classroom space at Silver Lake and Hawthorne Elementary. It’s a form of self-flagellation: Annoy the district by punishing students and, by extension, the community.

District leaders made a tactical decision to revisit the bond as soon as possible and forward an identical package to voters. For some, this reinforces the narrative that the district is a wee listening-challenged. The supposition of supporters is that pro-bond voters weren’t mobilized in February, but they will be come April 22.

We hope that’s true, because another “no” vote has consequences: Flight to private schools and incentive to uproot to better-performing school districts. How will Realtors spin it? “May I show you something in Shoreline or Mukilteo?”

As we noted earlier this year, a measure that preserves a stable tax rate and provides for the next generation of K-12 students defines the public interest.

The bond is the product of a protracted process, with discussions at 14 board meetings since 2011, comprehensive work sessions, long-range enrollment and facilities-planning updates, and a long-term capital facilities review. Public and cross-sector participation underscored inclusion with students, board, staff and the community. The goal was to harmonize the bond with the district’s strategic plan, capacity and enrollment projections, a facilities’ inventory, and anticipation of future needs such as full-day kindergarten and K-3 class-size reductions. It’s a case study in complex planning that puts students and taxpayers first.

The district itself is massive ­— 15 miles long with shifting demographics. Beginning in the late 1960s, administrators began methodical planning to align bonds and levies with forecast needs.

The stable-tax rate plan for $259.4 million ($6.55 per $1,000 of assessed home value, the same rate as in 2013) involves new construction, modernization and new technology. Phase 1 of a new high school (housing approximately 750 students), synthetic turf fields at two high schools, and building upgrades.

Make your vote count on April 22. Vote yes.

More in Opinion

Editorial cartoons for Friday, March 23

A sketchy look at the day in politics.… Continue reading

Editorial: Facebook not making it easy for some to stay

If it hopes to avoid losing users, it must convince them of its committment to their privacy.

Thiessen: Evangelicals back Trump because he’s kept his word

Trump is not the most religious president, but he may be the president most protective of religion.

Ignatius: Trump nominee raises concerns for Mueller probe

One senator says the nominee for a Justice Department post may give Trump a ‘window’ into the probe.

Which really is deadlier, vehicle accidents or firearms?

The statement in a recent letter to the editor that “GM products… Continue reading

Will Trump’s defenders ever admit truth?

I often wonder at what point my Republican neighbors will wake up.… Continue reading

Tobacco more deadly than opioids, but we tax that

Reconcile this: We have an opioid crises. People are addicted and choosing… Continue reading

Decision on health care unfair to U.S. Postal retirees

As a member of the federal community who served our country for… Continue reading

Editorial cartoons for Thursday, March 22

A sketchy look at the day in politics.… Continue reading

Most Read