Letter: Good enough then is not good enough now
To voters of the Sikeston R-6 School Bond Issue:
We are asking you to “VOTE YES” for the “Better Schools Better Communities” Bond Issue on June 2, 2020.
When it comes to passing a bond issue for building new schools, we so often hear the following comment: “We just had textbooks, and that was good enough for us.” However, we no longer live in a “textbook-only” school culture. What if our school district had not had the foresight to bring iPads into our students’ everyday educational experience? Where would students be today in this pandemic?
Today, technology rules the classroom and the world. For our students to be competitive and succeed globally, they deserve every technological advantage available to them so that they can become thriving learners and productive citizens. Therefore, the Sikeston R-6 School District needs state-of-the-art buildings that provide these benefits. Lee Hunter Elementary (1954) and C Building at Sikeston High School (1960) were built in the middle of the last century; their infrastructures are crumbling and can no longer equip 21st century technology advancements. It’s TIME for CHANGE. What was good enough then is not good enough now!
Secondly, the safety of our students is in jeopardy. One of the main features of both C Building and Lee Hunter is the prevalence of outside entries into the schools. C Building has four double-door entries on the east and west sides of it while Lee Hunter has more than 30 outside entries. Just think of the risks that these doors present each day our students go to school! As former teachers with Sikeston Public Schools, we know the importance of safe environments. Students excel more and perform better when they are comfortable and feel protected. It’s TIME for CHANGE. What was good enough then is not good enough now!
A YES vote for the bond issue on June 2 is asking us to raise our Sikeston R-6 debt levy from 21 cents to 63 cents, an increase of 42 cents. This increase will allow us to build a new Lee Hunter Elementary and a new C Building for English, history, journalism, and library. Even at 63 cents, the Sikeston R-6 debt levy will still be lower than Thomas W. Kelly (75 cents) and Cape Girardeau (66 cents), both of which have built new schools recently.
Our schools are the focal point of Sikeston; they represent the spirit of this community. We cannot have quality education with last century standards. It’s TIME for CHANGE. What was good enough then is not good enough now! Please vote YES on June 2. The students of Sikeston Public Schools deserve our support.
Sally M. Lape