A “YES” vote on 4A & 4B will allow the Cherry Creek School District to continue operating at the level of excellence our community expects and deserves.
Superintendent Dr. Scott Siegfried led a year-long process with hundreds of teachers, parents, students, school staff and community members to develop a strategic plan that would meet the needs of the district’s 55,000 students. That plan – Future Forward – was grounded in a commitment to equity and inclusive excellence.
The district held community conversations with parents, staff and students about the mission and specific goals of Future Forward.
This collaborative process included five community task forces (representing Budget, Safety & Security, Innovation, Long-Range Facility Planning and Marketing) to grapple with the challenge of how to fund Future Forward in the face of a growing budget shortfall due to chronic underfunding by the state.
4A at a Glance:
Operational Expenses – $35 million
Due to continued drastic underfunding by the state of Colorado, CCSD is facing a shortfall of more than $60 million over the next two years. To ensure that every student succeeds, we must provide safe and supportive classrooms with excellent teachers, nurses on hand every day, mental health supports, and the technology tools necessary to learn. Revenue would be collected at a rate of $1.65 per $100,000 of home value, a small price for a huge investment.
4B at a Glance:
Without imposing any new taxes, 4B allows for Cherry Creek School District No 5 debt to be increased by $150 million. This would allow for:
- $7 million to build a mental health/day treatment center to support students.
- $26 million for new and improved safety and security measures to include a new intercom system, push-button deadbolt locks for all classroom doors, secure double vestibules at elementary and middle schools, camera upgrades, and a new fire alarm system throughout the district.
- $12 million to ensure all students have access to technology during periods of remote learning at a one device per student ratio and update core facilities such as Data Center, wireless network, web filtering, and firewall.
- $9 million to provide funding for every high school to renovate space to create innovative environments that transform learning.
- $5 million for Cherry Creek Innovation Campus Expansion, including expanding programming options and creating new pathways for in-demand careers and expanding nursing and mental health certification programs.
- $88 million for major maintenance and a new elementary school in southeast Aurora to alleviate overcrowding. Repairs include asphalt/concrete, doors/hardware/keys, glazing, carpet/floors, mechanical/electrical/plumbing, fire protection, roofing, and utility/special infrastructure.
- $3 million for a renovation of the cafeteria space at Village East Elementary School.
Passage of both issues would raise property taxes by $1.65 a month per $100,000 of home value.
4A: Debt Free Schools Levy*
In order to make more General Fund revenues available for teacher compensation, maintaining class sizes, maintaining and adding mental health professionals and nurses to support students, and providing for the security and safety of students and staff, shall Cherry Creek School District No. 5 taxes be increased up to $35 million in tax collection year 2021, with such amount being adjusted annually thereafter by the percentage change in inflation, by levying a property tax at a rate sufficient to generate such amount; pursuant to section 22-54-108.7, C.R.S., shall such additional revenues be utilized for ongoing cash funding for capital construction, new instructional technology, existing technology upgrades, and maintenance needs of the district; and shall the district be authorized to collect, retain and spend all revenues of the district as a voter approved revenue change and an exception to the limits that would otherwise apply under Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado Constitution or any other law?
4B: No tax increase debt question*
Without imposing any new tax, shall Cherry Creek School District No. 5 debt be increased $150 million, with a maximum total repayment cost of not more than $293 million for the purposes of:
- Constructing a mental health day treatment facility to support mental health needs of students;
- Acquiring technology to support remote/online learning for all students including lower income students;
- Providing safety improvements at school buildings, including deadbolt locks and cameras;
- Acquiring, constructing, repairing, renovating and equipping school buildings and other school facilities to manage student growth; and
- Providing other district capital improvements;
And shall the taxes authorized at the district’s bond elections in 2003, 2008, 2012, and 2016 be extended and authorized to be used to pay the debt authorized at this election in addition to the debt authorized at such prior elections; and shall the mill levy be increased in any year, without limitation of rate but only in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of, premium, if any, and interest on such debt or any refunding debt (or to create a reserve for such payment); and may such debt be evidenced by the issuance of general obligation bonds or other multiple fiscal year obligations to be sold in one series or more, for a price above or below the principal amount thereof, on terms and conditions, and with such maturities as permitted by law and as the district may determine?
*Verbiage that will appear on the ballot.