Some schools in the Clark County School District aren't making the grade when it comes to their facilities.
Lincoln Edison Elementary School is in major need of repairs from major cracks in the walls, leaky roofs, overused outlets and outdated air conditioning units.
"It has a great effect on our learning environment especially on days when we have no air conditioning," said Lincoln Edison Principal Jennifer Newton. "It's very difficult to concentrate when you are not comfortable."
Rex Bell Elementary School also needs repairs but the larger problem has to do with overcrowding. There are 830 students when the school can only hold 655.
"Even for the teachers their classrooms are too small," said Rex Bell Principal Jaymes Aimetti. "We have 22 portables and it's difficult for them to do their job."
That's why the school district is putting a "pay as you go" tax measure on the November ballot to help rebuild the two campuses and repair 40 other schools. Voters will be asked to support a temporary 21-cent increase in property tax for six years. The average homeowner would pay an extra $6 per month, according to the school district. Superintendent Dwight Jones said it's a small price to pay for the children's future.
"It should not matter where your zip code is all kids deserve to go to a quality school," Jones said. "We know it's a tough time to go to the voters but equity matters. We think creating great facilities for all kids equally matter."
The cost to rebuild a school is $20 million each. If voters reject the ballot measure, the district says it will stick to its "band-aid" approach to fixing rundown schools. However, they say there are only so many band-aids to go around.
"You have to decide do you want to keep putting more and more money into something we are putting a band-aid on, but it is a better option for our children to have the best learning environment possible," Newton said.
The district is holding a meeting Tuesday at 6 p.m. at Bonanza High School to answer questions about the program. They'll have another meeting Thursday at 9:30 a.m. at Knudson Middle School.
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