Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
When was the last bond passed?
The last school bond was passed 23 years ago, and has a 25 year repayment period.
What did the last bond accomplish?
The last bond made significant improvements at all Estacada schools. Clackamas River Elementary was built, annexes were added at both River Mill and Eagle Creek elementaries, and Estacada Middle School received significant renovations.
Why pass a bond now?
Rising costs and expenses: As construction costs continue to rise and inflation continues, the expense of these bond projects will continue to rise. Additionally, prolonging addressing maintenance needs at all schools will result in the list of urgent fixes at our schools continuing to grow. To save our community money long-term, it is beneficial to address all needs as soon as possible.
Why do Estacada schools have significant maintenance needs?
The average Estacada School District building is around 60 years old. As the age of our buildings rise, so do maintenance costs. The Estacada School District's budget prioritizes teaching and learning, and more than 85% of the district's budget goes directly into the classroom. Within the last year, the district has increased its maintenance staffing to ensure that there is a sufficient workforce to maintain district property. The district will continue to prioritize high-quality educators, small class sizes, and a diversity of program offerings. These priorities mean that large maintenance investments are difficult to make. A school bond would focus on creating cost-saving efficiencies that would allow the maintenance of buildings to begin funding itself more, decreasing the amount of money that is taken away from students and the classroom.
How will the administration be held accountable in spending the bond funds?
An independent citizen Bond Oversight Committee would monitor the progress of the bond, issue regular reports, and ensure that projects are being managed responsibly. Additionally, the law prohibits the use of bond funds for any expense not listed on the ballot. Transparency and trust is important to the Estacada School District, and the district continues to receive clean audit results from a third-party annually.
What would happen at Eagle Creek Elementary?
Eagle Creek Elementary currently houses Summit Learning Charter, a charter school that partners with the district. Summit Learning Charter has been recognized statewide as a top charter school, and is an excellent tenant. Summit Learning Charter has been improving and maintaining the Eagle Creek building, and both students and the district benefit from the charter school remaining housed at Eagle Creek Elementary. Annually the district receives more than $2 million in profit from its partnership with Summit Charter.
How would CTE programs benefit?
Career Technical Education programs would benefit from the passage of a bond measure. All Career Technical classrooms including auto and agriculture would receive updates. Additionally, passage of the school bond would be a cost savings for the district, allowing them to invest more funds into school programs.