GLENPOOL - Glenpool Public Schools is calling on voters to approve a $1 million bond issue at a May 14 election.
The $1 million will go to improving technology and security across the elementary, middle and high school campuses.
GPS Superintendent Kathy Coley said the decision to focus on security was based on events that have taken place at schools around the U.S., like Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
“As we have seen what has happened in the news in other parts of the country, we always take a look at our own campus and see what needs that we have and what areas might be prone to some problems if we had an issue on our campus,” Coley said. “These three areas came to the top of our list.”
The district hopes to address three areas of security through this bond issue – communications, security cameras and monitoring systems and improved entrance security at the middle school and high school.
“Right now we use our security systems as more of a review of what has happened, and we need to change that tool to be more proactive,” Coley said.
After several drills, Glenpool administrators determined the need for a better communications system, besides cellphones and district phones, to be more efficient in case of a real emergency
Coley also said the improved entryways at the middle school and high school would require that visitors be “processed before they move on into other areas of the building.”The elementary campus already has this in place.
The technology component is where Coley said the majority of the bond issue will go. For the 2014-15 school year, all students from third to 12th grade will be require to have about nine hours of online testing. As of now, Coley said. GPS does not have the computer infrastructure or devices to meet that mandate.
“The minimum suggested computer requirement is one computer for every two students tested. In our district, that is 900 computers.”
GPS hopes to upgrade computer networks and purchase tablets, “not only for the testing requirement, but everyday in the classroom for instruction use,” Coley continued.
If approved, Coley said the bond issue would increase taxes for Glenpool residents.
“For every $1,000 that our patrons pay in taxes, their tax will increase about $52 a year,” Coley said. “We wish that wasn't the case, but our community has supported 26 consecutive bond issues in our district, and we are asking that our community will support this bond issue too so we can address the security and technology needs that we have.”
Coley said a committee has been put in place to ensure the $1 million stretches efficiently to each of the areas identified.
Glenpool's last bond election was held in 2010 and passed, marking the district’s largest bond issue ever at $25 million.
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