In 2018, Douglas County voters approved a bond and mill levy override (MLO) for the first time in over a decade. The passage of these measures allowed us to begin correcting years of financial neglect and harmful spending changes invented by previous DCSD “reform” boards.
These measures made it possible for us to begin improving teacher and staff compensation by correcting so-called market-based pay gaps and pay freezes. The MLO supported the addition of counselors and career and technical education (CTE) instructors and provided new teachers the highest starting pay in the metro area. Simultaneously, we prioritized development of a new, predictable and competitive salary schedule. It’s essential we continue this path of investing in our DCSD staff. Activating and sustainably funding this new and improved schedule will ensure we have in place the best educators and staff for our students.
The 2018 bond allowed us to enhance safety in every Douglas County school (including charter schools) and repair the most critical maintenance needs. Approving the 2022 bond will address continuing building maintenance as well as fund important new construction, transportation and technology updates. Obtaining these critical infrastructure improvements does not create any additional taxpayer burden and will only serve to dramatically enhance Douglas County.
Like many in our community, we have significant concerns about the current board majority and superintendent. However, voting “no” on 5A and 5B will not alter their questionable decision-making. Instead, voting “yes” on these measures ensures our students have well-maintained, optimal learning environments. A “yes” vote gives students more choice, as neighborhood schools will be built where needed. A “yes” vote guarantees sustained implementation of a predictable and competitive compensation structure for DCSD employees.
We believe the significant financial needs of our school district outweigh concerns with current leadership. We also have confidence that Directors Hanson, Meek and Ray will continue working to provide a transparent decision-making process that prioritizes student needs as future budgets are developed and expended. Voter approval of 5A and 5B is an investment in the bright futures of our students and the strength of our entire community.
We encourage you to vote yes on 5A and 5B and ask your friends and neighbors to do so as well.
Krista Holtzmann, DCSD BOE Director (2017-2021)
Anne-Marie Lemieux, DCSD BOE Director (2015-2019)
Christina Ciancio-Schor, DCSD BOE Director (2017-2021)