Letter: Stillwater District Levy

To the editor:

Members of the Stillwater Area School Board unanimously agreed on the levy question that will be on the ballot Tuesday, November 5. We stand united and ask you, the voters, to stand with us to continue the excellence of Stillwater area schools.

After hearing from our community, the board made four key decisions:   

• to decide early so the community had time to learn about the levy

• to describe how the dollars would be spent if the levy passes

• to list the impact on students if the levy fails   

• to allow the community to determine the future of our schools.

If the levy passes, a majority of the dollars, $13.5 million, will be spent to continue to offer the programs and services we currently offer. A smaller portion, $2.5 million, will be spent implementing our new community driven strategic plan, “Bridge to Excellence,” and $450,000 will be spent increasing school safety and security.

If the levy fails, class sizes will increase due to eliminating 50 teachers, a four-day school week will be implemented, significant reductions will occur to our 5-12 grade music program, transportation services will be reduced, security officers will be eliminated, fifteen custodians will be cut, and both junior high athletics and elective classes will be removed. The complete budget reduction list is available at www.stillwater.k12.mn.us/district/school-board/levy-2013-investing-excel....

Through local control, public school districts should reflect the priorities of their voters. Please support our levy request by voting YES to maintain the high quality tradition of Stillwater area public schools.

Stillwater Area School Board: Mike Ptacek, Tom Lehmann, George Hoeppner, Natasha Fleischman, Natalie Fedie, Amy Burback, Kathy Buchholz

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