Letter to editor stock art - old mailbox

This letter is in response to last week’s paid letter “Has district earned your trust?”

The letter stated the district’s projected enrollment in 2022-23 is 10,825. However, the most recent projection, listed in the 2021-22 budget, is 9,386.

Yes, ECCS uses elementary school classrooms for Pre-K. This is not unusual (many other local districts do so) and it fulfills the wishes of folks in the communities we serve to have quality pre-K in their neighborhood school.

Yes, it’s true that the school board approved using a lease levy to build an addition at Carver Elementary School. However, even including this lease levy, the district’s total property tax levy for next year (before the referendum) will increase by less than one-half of one percent. And as for transparency, the district discussed the Carver addition at four school board meetings before its final approval in May.

Yes, it’s true that the district received over $5 million in federal funds related to the pandemic. However, those funds can only be used for COVID-related purposes and as such, have no impact on the district’s long-term budget picture.

As a new school board member, I only voted to put this referendum on the ballot because I felt it was necessary for our district. If approved, these funds will have direct impact on our kids’ classrooms by lowering class sizes at the elementary level, adding choices for our middle- and high-school students, and preserving the activities and athletics.

Visit eccsvote.org to see the same information the school board saw to make its decision, and don’t hesitate to reach out with questions.

Sean Olsen

School Board member