Tiana Buschmann: Proposal an investment
Let’s look at the “big picture.” This bond proposal is not a short-term solution, but instead, an investment in our future. Increasing enrollment in our schools is inevitable, and sitting on our hands, waiting another five to 10 years to address the problem, will result in increased land prices, construction labor costs and hundreds of students displaced into modular classrooms or crammed into inadequate teaching spaces.
This proposal is a master plan to avoid having to return to ask voters for more money several times in the next 20 years. We will have the facilities in place to enhance excellent learning experiences for all students.
This is not just about moving the high school. A middle school at the current high school location will result in better access to after-school activities for students who cannot drive, as well as a level of classroom, lab, athletic and arts facilities superior to most middle schools.
The elementary schools will have more classrooms without the need for modular, as well as expanded preschool programs. The preschool is not just a fluff extra for the community. Federal and state laws require eligible, at-risk students or those with special needs be provided services through a preschool.
Additionally, the inclusion program provides an opportunity for typical students to experience co-existing, cooperating and learning in the same environment as special needs children. The current facilities for the special education preschool are not compatible with the programming. For example: Imagine trying to assist in toileting a small child with special needs in a bathroom packed with overflow items, educational materials and cleaning supplies.
I graduated from Steamboat High in 1997 (the year before the remodel). It was a great school then and is a great school now. Since then, the educational process and needed outcomes have changed. The current physical space does not mirror those outcomes.
Let’s face it — our community is growing, and we need a bold plan to cover the big picture, not piecemeal, inadequate pseudo solutions. Please vote yes on 3A and 3B.
Steamboat parent and 20-year resident
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