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Santa Clara Unified School District Pushing Toward Another Bond Measure?

By Robert Haugh

Tonight’s Santa Clara Unified School District Board meeting is one we’ll be watching closely. The school district hasn’t been in the spotlight recently. In fact, it has received very little media coverage.

At tonight’s meeting, SCUSD staff will present a “facility needs summary,” as well as a bond projects update.

A proposed bond measure of up to $875 million, funded by a parcel tax could appear on a ballot soon.  It’ll be the third bond measure in the last eight years for the District. The District issued:

  • a $419 million bond in 2014,
  • an $81.1 million bond in 2010, and
  • a $315 million bond in 2004.

So, the district has raised over $815 million since 2004. And they want to more than double that this year. Why?

Here’s one reason: the expansion of the Agnews High School could incur $250 million according to the report. When ground broke on the Agnews campus, the campus was originally scheduled to open in Fall 2019. Current needs state that the Agnews campus needs to expand from a 400-student high school to a “comprehensive” high school for 1,600 students, including an aquatic center, stadium, fields, gymnasiums and a performing arts center.

Here’s another reason: over $100 million is required for completion of projects initiated with 2014 Measure H bond funds. Does that mean that the district could not complete their projects on time and on budget?

We’ve been hearing some grumbling in the community about the constant need to come to voters for more funding.  We’ll keep our eye on the School Board’s actions and the details about the bond measure as it moves forward. And here’s hoping the Agnews campus opens earlier than the current estimates.

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Editor’s Note: School Board meetings are still not streamed online. Only audio recordings of meetings are archived by SCUSD and are not available immediately after meetings.

4 replies »

  1. “an aquatic center”… hmmm, I wonder, would it make sense to combine the International Swim Center and this new aquatic center to share the cost burden? Or is joint use out of the question because there would be too many scheduling conflicts?

  2. This isn’t a surprise from anyone that received a phone survey about a bond issue. They always look for the soft spot on how to push these taxes.

  3. Oh … give me a break, there are member on the board … like Ratterman, Canova, Noelani, Jodi, and Albert that are so deep in the union’s pockets that they just keep spending my taxpayer money like fools! There is NO WAY they deserve more money … they blew what they had. Where is all that State Redevelopment Money, and all the extra money you extorted from various developers too? Oh yeah, they GAVE it all away to the unions — did you reduce class sizes? Ah — no?? Funny that their district really isn’t as “impacted” with an overflow of new students as much as they kept bellyaching, is it? No wonder the student enrollment report took so darn long to see the light of day. Funny how facts tend to do that when it contradicts their fiction …

    Get the staff to tighten THEIR belts … better yet, get rid of some of the useless and excess administrators and union staff that just keeps sucking everyone dry. What are they really doing to educate the students anyway? The district is way, way too top heavy with non-teaching types … cut them out. Cut out all the perks they keep getting too. Live within your means … the well is D-R-Y..

    Enough is enough … better adopt the mantra … Fiscal Responsibility … cause you need to live with it … NO NEW BONDS, NO NEW TAXES needs to be the publics message to SCUSD load and clear. We’ve had enough and you’ve gotten enough. The well is dry. Deal with it!

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