Issue 58 passes; changes to come for the 2017-18 school year
For the first time in five years the Hilliard City School District put a levy on the voting ballot called Issue 58. The people of Hilliard voted on the Levy on November 8th, 2016, at the same time as the general election. The levy passed with 55 percent of the vote.
The levy will now provide more funding for Hilliard Schools, which includes the building of a new Memorial Middle School for the 2018-19 school year that will be located near Bradley High School. The current Memorial building will become the new Station Sixth Grade School, and the Innovative Learning Center will be moved to the old Station building.
The changes that will take place in time for the 2017-18 school year will be the changing of start and end times for the sixth grade, middle, and elementary schools. Elementary schools will once again begin fifteen minutes later, and will let out at 3:30 pm. Sixth grade and Middle schools will now start at 8:00 am, and be dismissed at 2:45 pm. These changes will cost the district around 130,000 dollars. Three new bus routes will have to be made as well.
Assistant Principal Matt Middleton shared that the passing of Issue 58 will bring about important changes to the district, but the education received by students will continue to be outstanding.
“[If Issue 58 hadn’t passed, the district] might have looked a little different but as far as the excellent education the students receive in our district, nothing would have changed. I will say that repairing leaking roofs around the district is something else this will allow to happen,” Middleton elaborated.
Even though Issue 58 passed, it was a close race with 45 percent of people who live in Hilliard and voted were opposed to the levy. According to ThisWeekNews.com, with Issue 58 passed, property tax will increase by around $196 per $100,000of property value. The benefits the levy provides for Hilliard City Schools is great for families with children, but many who have no kids in school may feel alienated by the rising taxes.
Melvin Sims lives in Hilliard but does not have any kids in the district, and does not support the levy. He explained that himself, as well as others in Hilliard, are planning on moving because of how high the total taxes are.
“I think there is a point they say people move here for the schools. I know people who leave here because of the taxes. My kids are out of school, I am leaving because the taxes are so high,” Sims said in an interview conducted by NBC4.
No matter what one’s stance on Issue 58 may be, Hilliard City School District will be looking to constantly improve the quality of learning in its schools, and make sure everything continues to head in the right direction.