SMSD Strong: Upcoming Bond Mail Ballot Election

SMSD Strong: Upcoming Bond Mail Ballot Election
Shawnee Mission School District

This January, the Shawnee Mission community will be asked to make a decision regarding a $264.2 million bond proposal. A series of proposed projects have been identified in order to make lasting facility improvements with the goal of benefitting every student, while providing a pathway to reduce teacher workload. On October 26, 2020, the Board of Education unanimously approved a resolution, identified as Option C, to be included on a January 26 mail ballot election.

The bond is being put forth with the goal that the Shawnee Mission School District will continue to be ranked among the finest school districts in the nation, employing exceptional educators who work in state of the art facilities, where learners achieve their full potential.

The proposed bond addresses a series of the district’s most immediate facility needs, including:

·       Specific elementary school rebuilds

·       Renovations for the Early Childhood Center

·       Technology and security upgrades for all buildings

·       A Career Technology Center remodel

·       A variety of HVAC, lighting, Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) improvements, asphalt, and roofing improvements for specific schools and buildings

·       Middle and High school remodels and furniture replacements

·       Athletic area upgrades and replacements

A plan to hire additional secondary certified staff in order to decrease workload for secondary teachers, in order to allow them to serve students well, ensuring the change can be funded sustainably for the long term.

Prior to the Board approval, Superintendent Mike Fulton provided another overview of bond information to the Board on October 26, including details about how the bond is designed to help our community live out the mission to provide a bridge to unlimited opportunities for students, and help staff with the support they need. 

The presentation, which summarizes information delivered to the Board previously, can be reviewed here.

It includes details about the types of district funds and recommended policy guardrails to support bond goals, a look at the study and planning process, a review of what needs a bond would help address, an overview on how a potential bond would impact tax rates, and a review of a bond communication plan.

The proposed bond maintains a lower mill levy rate than Johnson County peers, and should it pass, would result in an $8 annual increase per $100,000 of home value.