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posted: 2/26/2014 1:01 AM

What Glenbard referendum question will mean to students, residents

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By David Larson
Glenbard High School District 87 superintendent

"Strong schools result in a quality community."  

We have all heard this when someone is describing the importance of what strong schools mean to a community. We know the caliber of the local school system greatly impacts a community's property values, business climate and the overall perceived quality of life within the community.  

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Glenbard High School District 87 has a long-standing tradition of adding excellence and value to the greater community. Critical to continuing that reputation and legacy is ensuring we are maintaining and continuing to invest in our facilities.

On March 18, we will ask voters to approve issuing $35 million in bonds to help finance critical repairs and renovations to our four high schools. These bonds, which would replace bonds that are expiring, would be structured to ensure there is zero increase in our Bond & Interest Fund tax rate.

The referendum is focused on the following areas:

• student learning and achievement;

• classroom renovations/additions, including science labs;

• facilities must match 21st-century learning;

• technology infrastructure investment;

• maintaining a community asset;

• upgrades/renovations needed for aging community buildings;

• quality high schools contribute to property values;

• and high schools used by park districts, colleges, religious organizations and more.

In terms of health, safety and security, we would focus on:

• security upgrades to entrances, access and systems to support student safety;

• new HVAC systems would provide improved ventilation for a healthier learning environment;

• and improved handicap accessibility.

In terms of fiscal stewardship, we would focus on:

• replacement of bonds will complement budgeted operational funds to address critical facility needs;  

• utility savings from upgraded energy systems;

• balanced budget;

• and financial recognition status by state.

The referendum would help fund projects that will ensure Glenbard high schools continue to be a key factor in advancing the quality reputation of our greater community.

Learn more about the referendum at glenbard87.org and be sure to vote on March 18.

• David Larson is superintendent of Glenbard High School District 87. His column appears monthly in Neighbor during the school year.

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