DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The largest school bond election ever for the state of Texas is on the ballot on Election Day for those within the boundaries of Dallas ISD.
A $3.7 billion funding initiative for Dallas ISD will be decided Tuesday evening.
The plan is to use those funds to repair and upgrade about 200 schools. The argument is that Dallas ISD campuses are beneath the quality that students deserve.
Plans also include 10 new facilities and 14 replacement schools.
The 14 replacement schools include Atwell Academy, Hall Elementary School, Peabody Elementary School, Dallas Environmental Science Academy, Longfellow Middle School, Marcus Elementary School, DeGolyer Elementary School, Geneva Heights Elementary School, Hexter Elementary School, Reilly Elementary School, Kiest Elementary School, Urban Park Elementary School, JQ Adams Elementary School and Pease Elementary School.
The new facilities would include four Career Institutes, a Downtown Montessori School for Pre-K through 12th grade students, a Pre-K through 12th grade Midtown Project, a Pre-K through 8th grade STEM campus near the medical district, a Pre-K through 8th grade Montessori in Pleasant Grove, a Transformation School and a new Performing Arts Center.
Safety and security upgrades would total more than $114 million of the bonds total and include new surveillance cameras and technologies like keyless entry, weapon detection, video doorbells and a “Security/Emergency Ops Center” that would serve two functions. It would allow for both real time viewing and response to incidents daily, but also be the centralized operations point for the district in an emergency.
More than $1.9 billion would be used for renovations and modernizations of existing schools.
More than $124 million would also be allocated to improving athletic facilities.
The bond does not require any increase in the tax rate, but it leaves it where it currently is — with voter approval.
Those who oppose the bond say their school tax rate should decrease because there’s no need for the bond.
“Despite the language on the ballot, this is not a property tax increase,” School Board Trustee Miguel Solis said. “On November 3rd you are paying 24 pennies to DISD in property taxes and on November 4th, regardless of whether it passes or fails, you will still be paying 24 pennies.”
Dallas ISD is seeing fewer students enrolled yearly.