Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Construction continues at the Matilda Torres High School site. Madera Unified School Trustees resolved at their regular school board meeting Tuesday to put a bond measure on the Nov. 2018 ballot to build three new schools.
New school measure to go on November ballot
Madera Unified School District Trustees resolved at their regular school board meeting Tuesday to put a bond measure on the Nov. 2018 ballot to build three new schools, and to make the existing ones safe for kids and more accessible to students with handicaps.
In a unanimous decision, with Trustees Ricardo Arredondo and Philip Huerta absent, the board voted to place a $120 million bond issue before the voters in the November general election.
At the top of the bond project list of new schools set to be built is a concurrent enrollment middle school that would not only reduce student overcrowding at the middle school level but would also provide several unique career technical education programs in areas such as agriculture, engineering, robotics, and public safety.
The concurrent enrollment concept has captured the approval of virtually every observer acquainted with the project.
In addition to the new middle school, the bond project list includes two new school facilities to accommodate the burgeoning elementary school enrollment, thus reducing overcrowding.
Voter approval of the bond would also allow for improvements in student safety and security as well as enhanced handicapped accessibility.
According to Rosalind Cox, Director of Facilities Planning and Construction, a successful bond measure would provide improved student access to computers and modern technological equipment and programs.
Another driving force behind the new school bond is the district’s critical need to modernize outdated classrooms, restrooms, and replace temporary portables with permanent classrooms.
The cost of the bond to property owners within the district would be $49 per $100,000 of assessed valuation.
The bond election will be called under constitutional and statutory provisions that require fifty-five percent (55 percent) voter approval, and certain accountability requirements, including annual independent financial and performance audits of how funds are spent, and the formation of a Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee.