Editorial

I have 3 huge reasons for backing school bond issue

ACHTUNG: The following is not a “fair and balanced” article. It is an editorial by the editor.

I’m sending my mail-in ballot to my township clerk this week with an emphatic “yes” to both economic proposals being made Aug. 2.

I support the senior citizens’ millage on general principles and I have three huge reasons for supporting the Wayland Union Schools’ $48.5 million bond proposal. The three are:

(1) Most important, I am impressed with the “chain reaction” or “domino effect” provisions in the project.

(2) The aging swimming pool has outlived its usefulness and has become expensive and even dangerous to maintain.

(3) I have a lot of confidence in the people running the project, based on the results of the last bond.

The ‘chain reaction,’ the ‘domino effect’

Rather than just replace the current 48-year-old swimming pool at its current location, plans call for expanding the high school building, which will create the chain reaction.

The vacating of the current pool site will make way for a new band and orchestra room, which will lead to more room for the choir, which will lead to a new space for woodshop and auto shop classes, which will lead creation of a new place for wrestling practices.

This means that the bond project will benefit not just swimming, physical education and community education and recreation, but also other high school instruction classes and practice rooms.

I hear tell band, orchestra, choir, shop and wrestling programs have been operating in cramped quarters, not really offering quality experiences for our young people. This means this bond will jump start a process to improve all of them, not just the pool.

This is not to mention improvements, updates and repairs for all other buildings in the district, including the middle school and Pine Street, Steeby, Baker and Dorr elementaries.

Another not so obvious benefit of the bond project includes a new soccer field to better handle rain and snow, taking care of those recent challenges.

The swimming pool itself

The pool was state of the art in 1974 when it was installed. Unfortunately, time has passed it by and now it’s almost a liability, not just for the interscholastic swim team, but also for physical education classes, swim lessons and community use.

The way this project is set up, its implementation will create a domino effect for other programs to provide many benefits for the school and community. As has been pointed out in the past, this area is loaded with lakes and waterways that provide many swimming opportunities, but it behooves us to have the children learn how to swim as a matter of public safety.

The diving and swimming areas are too shallow to accommodate MHSAA swim meets, but it is clear that a new pool would do much more than be home to the high school swim team. It could provide lifeguard jobs for youth and boost the quality of the local physical education program.

• A new pool woul be used for athletics, elementary physical education, swim lessons and general community use

Furthermore, a new design would make it easy for both young and elderly access entry (featuring a zero entry pool-no steps-ease of access).

It is clearly demonstrated that there’s a lot more to this bond than just a new swimming pool.

Confidence in the people overseeing the project

I have been more than impressed with the way school officials handled the most recent bond for the missle school addition and tennis courts. District taxpayers got an even bigger bang for the buck when Assistant Supt. for Finance and Operations Patricia Velie came up with a way to grant the wishes of the football stadium crest to be leveled and artificial turf to be installed, at no added cost.

Wayland Schools promised and delivered on the bond project of a few years ago, and I have no reason to doubt they, unlike most politicians, will give us promises made, promises kept.

It really wasn’t difficult for me to get on board with this proposal. I think it’s good for the schools and good for the community.

Vote “Yes” on Tuesday, Aug. 2. If you don’t want to have to go to the polls, you still can apply for a mail-in ballot through your city or township clerk by Monday afternoon, July 18.

6 Comments

  • My opinion, Sheep…… Spend more money that you don’t have, moreover for a damn pool. Hey hey my my, the world has changed.

    • This bond covers so much more than just a community pool facility. Every student & building in our district will receive improvements. The current pool, choir, band/orchestra and wood & auto shop areas are original to the building construction in 1974. The District has done a fantastic job of maintaining these facilities, but the time has come for replacement.

  • All the money the Wayland school district gets from the casino and they still can’t figure out how to give the taxpayers a break by responsible budgeting. For shame!

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