Letter: Shawnee Schools need your support

When my family relocated to Shawnee in 2000, my children were eager to start their classes. Eighteen years later, all four of my children have graduated from Shawnee Schools and benefited immensely from their education here. To maintain high standards for the children of our community, I encourage my Shawnee neighbors to vote yes on two levies for the Shawnee Schools on November 6.

One levy is a renewal and will not increase taxes. The second is for additional funding — the first time in 14 years that the district has asked for new monies to support day-to-day school operations (curriculum, student programming, materials, supplies, textbooks, transportation, fuel costs, utilities, staff, etc.). In addition, Shawnee will enhance its mental health services and hire two full-time School Resource Officers to improve safety and security.

Why is Shawnee requesting a levy now?

In 2010, the State of Ohio changed its tax laws, causing a $3.5 million reduction in Shawnee’s annual revenue. However, Shawnee’s good fiscal management had provided a surplus that allowed it to continue its operations unchanged — for a time. Given projected budget shortfalls, the Board carefully considered reducing expenses and decided to make cuts to the music and arts programs. However, the public spoke up, requesting that the Board restore the cut programs — even though maintaining the programs would eventually necessitate a revenue increase.

Therefore, Shawnee Schools ask you to approve additional funding in order to preserve the breadth and depth of student education we have come to expect.

Schools are the foundation of the economic and social health of our community. Join me in voting yes for Shawnee Schools!

Linda Haycock, Lima

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