2018-10-21 / Viewpoints

Chalk Talk

By Linden “Bo” Moore, PhD
Superintendent Montrose Community Schools

When considering any success, accomplishment, or achievement I have been a part of, I think of all of the planning and preparation that went in prior to that “moment of glory.” Alan Lakein, author of How to Get Control of Your Time and Your Life, is credited with the well-known adage, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.”

Mr. Lakein’s words are proven true time and time again throughout Montrose Community Schools. We watched how careful and meticulous planning played out last Friday night when our staff and students honored our veterans and raised nearly $4,000 for Mission 22. The planning for that awesome event started in June and after four months of work, our community was able to honor the brave men and women that served our country.

Similarly, the Montrose seventh grade students recently completed a service learning project. They raised and donated over $2,500 to the Chadtough Foundation. The staff and students made this possible with careful planning and consideration.

The benefits of planning can take a difficult and confusing task and reduce it to a seamless routine that appears to be easy and second nature. If you are ever looking for an example of that, consider the drop-off and pick up procedures at Carter Elementary. The staff of Carter Elementary delivers hundreds of our youngest learners to their bus, crosswalk, pick up loop, or parent pick up site on a daily basis. This is done successfully using processes that are mapped, timed, and coordinated. Each staff member has an important role where communication is key. Everyone must do their part of the plan because this is not about one teacher concerned about one class of students, this is about ensuring all of our children get home safely.

In an effort to continue to find success and ways to improve, Montrose Community Schools will continue our Strategic Planning Process on Monday, Oct. 22, in the High School Media Center at 3:30 p.m. We will identify the areas where we are successful and plan ways to continue that. We will identify the areas of need and plan ways to address them. We will identify the aspirations we have for our school district and plan ways to achieve them. I encourage any parent, community member or staff member to join us.

Our community has been incredibly supportive of Montrose Community Schools and because of that support, we have top-notch facilities and much to be proud of. A key portion of the Strategic Planning Process will be to identify ways we can maintain our facilities and make sure that they will continue to serve the educational needs of our students for many years to come.

On Tuesday, Nov. 6, the Montrose Community Schools will be asking voters to consider a sinking fund initiative that will generate approximately $155,000 each year to be used exclusively for building repairs with a primary focus on making further security upgrades, investment in instructional technology that supports 21st century learners, and repairing and upgrading the quality of our schools’ roofs.

• Voters are being asked to consider a $1 mill ($1 per each $1,000 of taxable value) sinking fund levy for the next ten years to support the district’s need to complete necessary repairs.

• For the owner of a home worth $100,000, this sinking fund would be an increase of approximately $50.00 per year or 14-cents per day. Here are few more examples:

Home Value Taxable Value Sinking Fund Sinking Fund
(approximately Annual Cost Cost per Day
50% of Home
Value)
$200,000$100,000$100.0028cents
$150,000$75,000$75.0021cents
$100,000$50,000$50.0014cents
$75,000$37,500$37.5011cents

• Sinking funds cannot be used to fund ongoing operating expenses, salaries or benefits, textbooks and supplies, or preventative maintenance. Rather, sinking funds can only be used for remodeling, repair/replacement of buildings and sites with all expenses audited for compliance with the Michigan Department of Treasury guidelines.

Here is the actual ballot language:

Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property in Montrose Community Schools, Genesee and Saginaw Counties, Michigan, be increased by and the board of education be authorized to levy not to exceed 1 mill ($1.00 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation) for a period of 10 years, 2018 to 2027, inclusive, to create a sinking fund for school security improvements, for the construction or repair of school buildings, for the acquisition or upgrading of technology and all other purposes authorized by law; the estimate of the revenue the school district will collect if the millage is approved and levied in 2018 is approximately $155,878?

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