Safe Schools, Strong Schools Q & A
1. What is the Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal?
• Keeping students safe has never been more important, and the Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal will fund security enhancements at existing buildings and facilities to ensure Chippewa Valley Schools students are safe before, during and after school.
• The Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal will allow Chippewa Valley Schools to continue providing a high-quality learning environment, equipping generations of students with the skills needed to succeed in college and 21st century careers.
• Strong schools keep our property values strong, and the Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal will help our community remain a great place to live, work and raise a family.
2. Where will the money go?
• The Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal will fund security enhancements to ensure the safety of all Chippewa Valley Schools students, staff and families.
• The proposal will provide state-of-the-art instructional technology, increased access to Career and Technical Education programs and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) instruction that help prepare our students for the competitive 21st century workforce.
• With a focus on student safety, this proposal will fund new security measures, including replacement of door locks, new security cameras, improved interior door systems, hallway barriers, new parking lots, and roof repair.
- Bonds cannot be used for salaries, service contracts, lease payments, installment contracts, repairs, maintenance or maintenance agreements.
- Bonds cannot be used for purchasing automobiles, trucks or vans, portable classrooms purchased for temporary use, uniforms, textbooks, upgrades to an existing computer operating system or application software, computer training, computer consulting, or computer maintenance contracts.
- Bond proposal funds cannot be used for staff wages, salaries, or operational costs. They also cannot be used for repair or maintenance costs or other operating expenses. Bond proposal funds must be used only for purposes specified in the ballot language, and, as required by State law, they must be audited.
3. Will this proposal raise taxes?
• The Safe Schools, Strong Schools proposal will not cost taxpayers one extra penny on their current tax bills. By extending the repayment of our current bond, this proposal allows us to fund necessary security improvements without raising taxes.
• Schools across Michigan routinely use bonding to fund necessary projects and improvements.
• Every dollar spent will be tracked and available on a public website to ensure transparency and guarantee taxpayer dollars are spent wisely.
• Fiscal responsibility is a key part of keeping our schools strong, and Chippewa Valley Schools has received a perfect fiscal wellness score from the leading school finance rating organization for five years straight, and the highest possible rating on independent audits every year.
• Technology is evolving rapidly, and our students deserve state-of-the-art instructional technology and increased access to Career and Technical Education programs that give them real life, on-the-job experience and a head start on careers.
• To keep up, Chippewa Valley Schools students must have access to the best available technology and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) instruction to help prepare them for the competitive 21stcentury workforce.
• Chippewa Valley Schools maintains a 95 percent graduation rate — 10 points higher than the state average — and providing the best available instructional technology to all students would help continue that record of success.
5. Why are we discussing school safety now?
• Our top priority at Chippewa Valley Schools is the safety of our students and staff.
• An independent expert analysis showed that while Chippewa Valley Schools is doing many things well on student safety, more can and must be done to face continually evolving school threats.
• Security enhancements at existing buildings and facilities are needed to help keep Chippewa Valley Schools safe for current and future generations of students and staff.
6. I don’t have kids in the district. Why should I care about school safety?
• Safety is more than a school issue; it’s a community issue.
• Staying ahead of continually evolving school threats is in our entire community’s best interest.
• Chippewa Valley Schools is more than a school district — it’s part of our community, and we must do everything we can to keep it safe.
• Strong schools mean strong neighborhoods and higher property values and help attract new families, businesses and talent to our area.
7. The district already has security cameras and other safety measures in its buildings. Why do we need more safety measures?
• While our district has tried to keep pace with best practices for safety, the nature of school safety continues to evolve and our district must continue to adapt.
• An independent, building-by-building review of current security features was conducted in April 2018, and included an assessment of physical barriers in every school building among many other safety measures.
• Overall, the expert, building-by-building security assessment found that Chippewa Valley Schools does many things well, but that security enhancements are needed to keep pace with emerging threats.
8. Shouldn’t we be focused on spending more in the classroom?
• Security enhancements at existing buildings and facilities are needed to ensure a safe learning environment for current and future generations of Chippewa Valley Schools students, teachers and staff.
• Providing a safe, secure learning environment for all students, teachers and staff is step one toward providing a high-quality education that prepares our students for college, careers and bright futures.
• CVS spends more than most Michigan school districts on education instruction.