Tax increase unwarranted for Ray-Pec School District
I’m writing as a property owner, whose county taxes are already going to increase this year because of reassessment of county property values. However, I’m also writing as a former two-term Ray-Pec school board member and a retired teacher who spent her career teaching in Cass County, including the Raymore-Peculiar School District.
I remember the last attempt at passing a tax increase, just a few years ago. We were told of the dire consequences of the levy not passing — everything from services being lost or diminished, to staff and programs being cut drastically.
Instead, since that levy failed, our district has increased programs and services and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on new (and mostly unnecessary) technology in every area of our district. Also, since that levy failed, teachers’ salaries have been justifiably increased to make up for the salaries that were frozen as an effort to get patrons to pass the unnecessary levy.
While our teachers certainly need to be paid well, has anyone thought about the fact that our administrators won’t be getting raises if teachers don’t? In reality, our district has managed to add administrators to the payroll in the years since the last levy failed, while the number of elementary remedial reading teachers has remained stagnant.
Our district’s success doesn’t depend on an increased tax levy to buy every new “shiny” idea. It depends on teachers, administrators and patrons who make the best use of resources already available, based on student priorities, not looking good compared with other districts.
I will be voting “no” on this unnecessary levy increase.