Commentary: Strong schools build strong communities. Vote yes for our students

Our community has an opportunity to approve two school funding measures that will help ensure our Edmonds School District students have safe schools and funding for much-needed technology.

The Edmonds School District, which serves students in Edmonds, Lynnwood, Mountlake Terrace, Brier, Woodway, and parts of unincorporated South Snohomish County is asking voters to approve two funding measures in the February 13 election: Prop. 1, a school construction bond, and Prop. 2, a replacement technology/capital levy.

Our students are counting on us to vote yes on these two critical measures.

Prop. 1

Of our school district’s 34 campuses, 15 were built more than 50 years ago. Prop. 1 funds a critical gap in state funding; the state does not build, replace or repair school buildings. Rather, school districts like ours rely on voter-approved bonds and levies to replace or update schools. If approved, Prop. 1 would provide the necessary funding to replace several of our oldest schools, ensuring our kids have safe and secure learning environments to achieve at their highest potential.

Prop. 2

This is a replacement levy, not a new levy, and continues funding to ensure our kids have increased access to digital literacy and technology necessary to stay competitive and prepared for the jobs of tomorrow. The levy funds three major technology needs: student technology, professional learning, network infrastructure and tools for organizational support.

Both propositions maintain a stable tax rate for the long-term, one that is lower than many districts in our region (see below).

Investing in our students and schools strengthens our local communities. It benefits our economy. And it ensures a vibrant future for our cities. Data supports a strong connection between new schools and increased student attendance, academic outcomes and student morale.

Please join us in showing our support of our local schools by voting to approve Prop. 1 and Prop. 2 by Feb. 13.

— By Dr. Steven Woodard and Monica Wheaton

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