Hebron school board weighs referendum opinion

2014-03-17T00:00:00Z 2014-04-16T16:46:14Z Hebron school board weighs referendum opinionSusan O'Leary Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
March 17, 2014 12:00 am  • 

HEBRON | While regular monthly business was conducted at the Boone Township school board meeting last week, board members, administrators, and the public also voiced their opinions about the upcoming May 6 referendum, which will seek voter approval for an increase in the school property tax levy through the year 2021.

Elementary school principal James Martin said he and high school principal Mark Lutze and middle school principal Jeff Brooks are working to host a voter’s registration day in light of the referendum.

“We aren’t telling people how to vote, we just want the will of the community to be fairly represented,” said Lutze.

“I totally support the referendum,” said Martin. “We’re going to do everything we can do to communicate to the public and get people to show up.”

Parent and substitute teacher Stephanie Mathews said she supports the referendum “100 percent,” because classes are unusually large at 30 or more students.

“When you see other schools that have much smaller class sizes you have to think, is this the best place for my child,” said Matthews. “The community needs to realize it’s an awesome school, but if we don’t have smaller class sizes, we’ll start losing families.”

Brooks said the 1980s-era classrooms “are not meant to house 31 sixth graders.”

“I feel like I’m stepping over students at times,” said Brooks. “It makes it difficult on those teachers and those students. I support the referendum as well and will do anything necessary to move it forward.”

Board member Donald Fry, who voted against the referendum at a special February 18 meeting, defended his vote but said he has since changed his position.

“I’m proud of this school, and I wasn’t against the referendum,” said Fry. “I didn’t have the knowledge that I wanted to have, but now I do. For $3 a week, what are people going to have to sacrifice? Nothing. People won’t have to sacrifice a thing to make sure the students at Hebron are still remembered. If it wasn’t called a tax, they’d all vote yes.”

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