The Edmond Sun

Local News

February 21, 2014

Deer Creek sets $5 million bond issue for March 4

EDMOND — The Deer Creek Board of Education has called for a March 4 bond election, seeking voter approval of $5 million in school bonds.  

Polling places will be regular precinct locations in the Deer Creek Public School District and polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

“As part of our long-range and short-range plans for capital improvements the March 4 bond election will make available much needed funds for improvements and additions to various areas in immediate need,” said Superintendent Ranet Tippens. “The approval of this bond issue will not raise taxes.”

 Tippens said the $5 million will be financed through the issuance of bonds. The proposed bonds will be sold as outstanding bonds are paid off. This will allow the district to maintain its target millage rate of 36.50 mills.

Proposition 1 is $4.4 million and will go toward school maintenance and repair throughout the district.

Proposition 2 is $600,000 and is designated for transportation including six to eight new buses.

“As parents and patrons are aware, many of our heating and air conditioning units are quite old,” Tippens said. “These units frequently break down and the repairs are expensive. The roof at Deer Creek Elementary must be replaced and the roofs of other buildings need repair.”

She added Deer Creek Public Schools at Northwest 206th Street and MacArthur have been quoted by adjusters as having the highest incident of hail in the state of Oklahoma.

“Technology opportunities in the classroom continue to advance, however, we must have additional equipment and infrastructure in order to keep pace,” Tippens said. “As our enrollment continues to grow, we must have additional desks, chairs, furniture and textbooks in our classrooms, along with equipment for extracurricular activities, to educate and provide extracurricular opportunities for our children.”

This year Deer Creek Public Schools added 400 new students above last year’s student count, Tippens said, bringing the total number of students to 5,066 as of Feb. 1.

The average cost to supply a new student with a desk, chair and needed textbooks per student is $800, Tippens said.

“State monies do not fully cover the cost of the textbook series up for adoption,” she said. “The average cost per textbook is over $100. At this time we are reviewing online options.”

Other proposed maintenance projects include:

• Security cameras and door locks at Prairie Vale Elementary, Grove Valley Elementary, Rose Union Elementary, Deer Creek Elementary, Deer Creek Intermediate School and Deer Creek High School;

• Plumbing where needed;

• Parking lot lighting at Rose Union and the operations center;

• Floors at Prairie Vale and in the Deer Creek Elementary entryway; and

• Painting at Prairie Vale, Grove Valley, Rose Union, Deer Creek Elementary as well as the intermediate and high school.

Tippens said Deer Creek residents have a strong history of supporting the school system and its bond issues.

“Over the last few years, state funding has drastically been reduced, however, our needs haven’t stopped,” Tippens said. “The proposed bond issue will provide the much-needed funds to address these needs. Without this bond, many of these needs simply cannot be addressed. Now is the best time to make the proposed investment.”

Community Information meetings have been set up. The next meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 25 at Church of the Servant, 14343 N. MacArthur Blvd., Oklahoma City.

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Do you agree with a state budget proposal that takes some funds away from road and bridge projects to ramp up education funding by $29.85 million per year until schools are receiving $600 million more a year than they are now? In years in which 1 percent revenue growth does not occur in the general fund, the transfer would not take place.

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