Clay County’s schools are in need of repairs. Old, outdated classrooms, inadequate science labs, leaking roofs, air conditioners that constantly break down, portables crowding out playgrounds, students eating lunch at 10:00 in the morning—the evidence is everywhere. With the majority of schools at 50 years or older, more than $318 million in facility renovations has been identified as needed right now as well as an additional $300 million in new schools to meet anticipated growth in the next 5-10 years.
Our students need schools that are safe, updated, comfortable and promote learning. That’s why ED.F.I.R.S.T. Half-Cent for Schools will be on the ballot in November 2020. It’s a restricted use half cent sales tax that would raise money to revitalize local schools and can only be used for capital improvement projects listed in the referendum. That means renovating and remodeling classrooms, science labs, media centers and other spaces; replacing and repairing deteriorating roofs, air conditioners and other items; replacing portables with permanent classrooms; and other improvements to our existing schools.
Clay County District Schools has become a preferred district. Funding is needed to build new schools due to expected growth in student enrollment over the next decade. Doing so will also relieve potential overcrowding in schools. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that we have safe, updated, and high-quality learning environments for all Clay County District School students!