Be informed: attend school district referendum meetings

March 7, 2014

On Wednesday, April 2, voters in Cape Henlopen School District will go to the polls to determine the fate of a proposed new elementary school. Voters will decide whether to approve a tax increase of about $59 per year for the average property owner. Those increased tax dollars would pay the debt service on bonds sold to finance a new school on property located along Route 24 across from Beacon Middle School.

Along with roads, schools are a vital part of what makes our society function efficiently and intelligently. Roads allow for transpor­tation, commerce and interaction. Schools provide the fundamental knowledge and skills needed for successful living and decision making in communities at all levels. The more knowledgeable and thoughtful the people are, the stronger the communities.

So, is the proposed new school a good idea that will strengthen our communities and help us all live better lives? Is the new school really needed, and is it an important part of an over­all plan that will make Cape Henlopen School District better at educating its students?

Those, and others, are questions voters who plan to go to the polls should be asking in advance. In this case, the people - not their elected officials - are the decision makers. As such, we owe it to ourselves to become as knowledgeable as possible about the proposed new school before we make our decision, so we can choose wisely for the long-term good of the community.

Over the course of the next two weeks, the district will be hosting four community meetings to explain the referen­dum and answer questions the community may have. Superintendent Bob Fulton and Ad­ministrative Services Director Brian Bassett will make the presentations.

All will begin at 6 p.m. The dates and places include: Tuesday, March 11, at Rehoboth Elementary School; Wednesday, March 19, at Milton Elementary School; Monday, March 24, at Cape Henlopen High School; and Tuesday, March 25, at Bea­con Middle School.

The public should not tax itself lightly, nor should it shy from contribut­ing more if it will help strengthen the com­munity over the long haul. These meetings are the best opportunity the people will have to hear firsthand what is proposed and why, and to help them make informed and intelligent decisions when they go to the polls.

  • Editorials are considered by the editorial board and written by Laura Ritter, news editor, and Dennis Forney, publisher, with occasional contributions from other board members: Trish Vernon, editor; Dave Frederick, sports editor emeritus; Jen Ellingsworth, associate editor; Nick Roth, sports editor; and Chris Rausch, associate publisher.