(West Bloomfield Schools, Jan. 26, 2017)
WEST BLOOMFIELD, MI – At a regular meeting of the West Bloomfield School District Board of Education, on January 23, 2017, the board voted unanimously to go forward with a comprehensive bond election on May 2, 2017. If the $120 million, 20-year proposal is approved by voters, the current tax rate will be reduced by one-half mill.
The bond proposal will affect every West Bloomfield School District student, school, and school facility.
School Superintendent Gerald Hill said that the bond proposal will enable the school district to implement its long-range facilities plan while assuring that the school district is the right size for this generation and the next. “We’re calling it the ‘4Rs bond proposal’ because it will right-size, re-imagine, renovate, and refresh the school district. If voters approve, we will be able to make significant improvements across the school district with a half-mill decrease in the current tax rate,” said Hill.
The bond proposal is designed to address current building needs while positioning the school district for the future, both educationally and financially. The bond projects fall into eight basic categories:
~Transforming outdated spaces at West Bloomfield High School to accommodate innovative teaching and learning, including Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM), Fine Arts, iCenter, Career and Technical Education (CTE), Health & Wellness, and Athletics
~Adding an auxiliary gym to West Bloomfield High School and remodeling fine arts facilities, the auditorium, the pool area, and bathrooms
~Redesigning all elementary iCenters, common areas, and classrooms to create flexible learning spaces that support student interaction, research, problem-solving, and creativity
Upgrading and replacing instructional technology to improve student learning and operational efficiencies
~Closing the Administration and Community Services (ACS) building, relocating Central Office to an existing school, and selling the ACS property
~Replacing school buses as they reach the end of their useful life
Board of Education President, Julie Beaty said that the bond proposal will “further enhance West Bloomfield School District’s reputation for quality educational programming. Approval of this bond proposal assures that our schools and school facilities are up-to-date, in good repair, and are the appropriate size for this generation and the next. We firmly believe that this bond proposal will positively affect property values in the school district,” she said. “In addition, if voters approve the bond, there will be a half-mill reduction in the current tax rate. This bond proposal is a win-win for the greater West Bloomfield community.”
The school district will be working to help residents understand the rationale for the bond projects and the benefits to students and other members of the community. Superintendent Hill said, “We will be making presentations and distributing information about the election to help people understand how the bond proposal will positively affect our schools and our community.”
Hill invited residents who have questions or need additional information about the bond proposal to click on Bond Election Information or Talk to us on the school district’s website (www.wbsd.org), contact any West Bloomfield principal, or call him directly at 248/865-6485.