Fridley residents in three school districts—Fridley (District 14), Spring Lake Park (District 16) and Anoka-Hennepin (District 11)—will be voting on school tax levies on Nov. 8. This is the second in a series on those levies and highlights information from the Spring Lake Park School District.
On Nov. 8, Spring Lake Park School District residents will be voting on two questions:
- Ballot Question 1 is for the renewal of an existing $524-per-pupil Levy for Learning, set to expire in 2012.
Spring Lake Park’s current level of Levy for Learning funding is $855 per student. If it expires before it is renewed, funding would drop to $330 per student.
This levy is used basically to fund teachers and educational support staff. It is equivalent to approximately 45 teaching positions.
If this levy expires there would be $2.8 million in annual cuts resulting in increased class sizes and student programs being cut, along with increased fees for student activities.
Renewal of this levy will not cause an increase in taxes.
- Ballot Question 2 is for a Capital Project/Technology Levy
This levy is to fund technologies to improve student learning, for a replacement schedule for student and staff computers, and for retaining current levels of technology staff necessary to provide ongoing maintenance, along with staff training for the effective use of our technology investment.
Jeff Ronneberg, District 16 superintendent, speaking at a recent informational meeting, discussed how tech-savvy students are now.
"Kids are coming into the schools with so much knowledge that our current equipment can't keep up with," Ronneberg said. "When a computer fails in the middle of a paper being written, when research can't be completed because of equipment failure, how are we to prepare a student for the future?"
He went on to make a comparison of where the Spring Lake Park school district is in relationship to levies in other districts. "Even with the additional $199 for the Technology Levy, Spring Lake Park Schools fall below a majority of the area schools with voter approved levies."
Question 2 will add approximately $63 per year to the average $200,000 district home.
Spring Lake Park School District has put together quite a bit of information about the tax levies. Below are the links:
Voting for Fridley residents will be at Woodcrest Elementary, 880 Osborne Rd., Fridley, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.