Voters to decide on new bonds for Columbia Public Schools in April

Oct 10, 2013

Photo by Katie Link.

Columbia Public School Districts plan to ask for a great sum of change in new bonds over the next ten years.

$50,000,000 will come from a $.04 tax increase that will provide facility improvements around Columbia.

District spokesperson, Michelle Baumstark, said 153 trailers are currently being used at schools like Cedar Ridge Elementary. Due to growth in that area, the elementary school is already 100 students over capacity.

Baumstark said the trailers cause a “disconnect” between the school and the students. There are currently more students learning in trailers rather than the building.

“I think the expectation is of not only our students, but also of our community- that we provide quality educational faculties for our students,” Baumstark said. “And this is one way we can do that.”

28 trailers have already been eliminated through out the school districts and the physical building of Cedar Ridge Elementary will be repurposed.

The April 2014 bond issue suggests not only building a new elementary school, but also providing new technology, roof improvements and school expansions. After 2014, the district plans on to ask for a non-bond income every two years until 2020.

School board president, Christine King, said she has seen improvements since the passing of the bond issue in 2010.  At that time, Battle High School was rebuilt.

“Absolutely there has been an improvement,” King said. “We are doing exactly what we said we were going to do with the money-what we do told the voters we were going to do. I mean all of it is improvement.”

After 2014, the district plans on to ask for a non-bond income every two years until 2020.