At What Price Does Ramona Pay for Public Education?

With educational funds from the state and federal government decreased, and a large payment looming on the $25 million loan the district has, the Ramona school board is looking to put a $66 million school bond on the ballot for November. It’s no secret that the district needs money, and the school bond is the quickest way to achieve this.

There are pros and cons on the passing of a school bond. The biggest positive is that 100 percent of the funds will be locally controlled to support our school’s needs of which there are many. One of the biggest negatives would be, is the school district just digging a deeper financial hole to recover from by having school bond funds to pay for projects and improvements while ignoring the recurring deficit budget problems?

Make no mistake, this requires a buy-in from the entire community and financial support from the property owners to the tune of $60 per $100,000 of assessed value (as determined by the county), in the form of an additional property tax which will change each year according to property values; or on average of another $120 to $360 a year (with some owners paying less and others paying more).

So the question is, “At what price does Ramona pay for its public education?” The repairing and modernizing of our schools is imperative and needs to happen; our children should have a safe and updated environment in which to learn. But to fully support a school bond, we need to have a clear vision and a solid plan for the future with agreement from all sides to provide for a financially stable school district and not one that will continually rely on bonds and bailouts to survive. It looks like you’ll have your opportunity to decide come November.

Jeff Mitchell, Publisher

Related posts:

  1. Public education in State of Emergency
  2. Budget talks turn to school bond for Ramona
  3. Can You Save for Retirement and Education?
  4. At What Price Do We Save Our Schools
  5. Survey shows support for a school bond

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Posted by Maureen Robertson on Jul 12 2012. Filed under Editorial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

6 Comments for “At What Price Does Ramona Pay for Public Education?”

  1. Local

    We as property owners, MUST VOTE NO on the bond. At a time when our saleries are going down, what we can't afford is our TAXES GOING UP. Please people vote no on this bond.

  2. Honest Resident

    We, as property owners, will see the value of our property continually decrease if we fail to provide for an educated citizenry. You MUST VOTE YES or see your quality of life and that of your children continually decrease. Taxes are lower now than any point in the last 50 years as a percent of incomes. Don't buy the phony talking points that we are the highest taxed in the world. We MUST pay for the services and quality of life tat makes this country and Ramona a great place to live!!

  3. cookie

    I want to know where the money will go before I vote yes. I am totally against this bond if any money is used for admin. costs or overpriced bids for repairs and upgrades. How many people with kids are in Ramona that we would need 66 million anyway?
    I pay for the bus my kids take, I pay for school lunch and I get a long list every year for school supplies. When does this end? By the way, I asked my daughters what they learn every day in school. My fifth grader once told me Martin Luther King Jr. freed the slaves. Really?? I'm going to start charging back for all the re-education I have to do.

  4. Tom

    The bond is a very good investment for Ramona. The State of California and Federal taxes only fund 94% of the cost of education for any given school district. That is a statewide figure, not just Ramona. If you think state and fed govenments should pay 100%, contact the Department of Ed./ Govenor and President and ask them to provide funds for 100% for education.. But the bottom line is if Ramona doesn't come up with the 6%, our schools will be under funded, classrooms will be over crowded, buildings that are maturing will not get the neccessary repairs and the list will go on and on. Your property values will drop and people who are renting out houses will loose renters to other communities in SD. Those with businesses will see buisiness fall off because our population will drop. When you vote look at the big picture, ask yourself. Do you want our community to attract homeowners, businesses and renters because we have a school district with a great rep like Poway or a school district with a rep for overccrowding and low scores and buildings that a dilapidated ? It seems to me the small fee for each homeowner is minimal compared to the consequences of not passing the bond.

  5. sandra j

    Tom,
    I can't imagine where you dreamed up this 94% funding idea, but it is absolutely ludicrous. The state, fed, and local funding of public education is in no way tied to the actual costs incurred in providing it. The district has already made substantial cuts but even the best projections have us operating with well over a 6% deficit in the coming years. The district's expenses, which are dominated by salary and benefit costs, can no longer be met due primarily to state budget cuts compounded by declining student enrollment. This is not because of some state or federal mandate to fund less than 100% of the costs!
    In a different set of circumstances, I believe this bond could be justified and truly benefit our community. However, our district's administration has ignored the writing on the wall for many years and spent us into disaster. Who would continue to support a group with their track record of financial mismanagement? They are heading toward insolvency and desperately want this bond money (the half they haven't already spent) so they can retain their power and not have the state step in and take over.
    As far as property values versus bond expenses go, given the present sentiment in Poway (and elsewhere) regarding outrageous financing schemes and the burden placed and present and future generations of homeowners, I submit that not passing this bond may actually bolster local values.
    Finally, do you feel that Ramona has a rep for low test scores? If so, you must have pulled that out of the same hole you got your other statements from.

  6. Guest

    Not making any idle threats, my family and I will move out of Ramona if this does not pass. If you think our property values suffered the past 3 years, compare that to what will happen in the next 3 as Ramona becomes a place to AVOID for any new homeowner. With the high cost of gas, Ramona has become even less attractive of an option for home buyers, and certainly for renters. The bond measure will free up some funds in the operating budget by reducing interest on the previous loan, so the district's chance for solvency is much higher. Most people will pay around $200 per year (deductible, so more like $140) to ensure that their property values don't drop at least another 10%. Think I am exaggerating? See what happens if the bond fails!

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