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Waco ISD school board to decide if $376.1 million bond proposal will make it to November 2021 ballot

Waco School Board
Posted at 7:39 PM, Aug 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-07 00:05:55-04

WACO, TX — The Waco ISD school board is expected to decide the future of a $376.1 million bond recommendation that would allow for the reconstruction of four schools in the district.

Superintendent Susan Kincannon will recommend the proposal, which was created by a community advisory committee during the first few months of the year, at the school board meeting on Thursday, August 12.

The board will discuss the proposal and vote to decide whether or not to put it on the ballot for the November general election.

If the full proposal is passed in November, Waco High School, Tennyson Middle School, Kendrick Elementary School, and the recently-lost G.W. Carver Middle School would all be completely reconstructed. South Waco Elementary would be renovated.

"Many of our campuses are old and outdated, built in the 1950s, and 1961 for Waco High School," Kincannon said.

As of now, the cost of the bond would be roughly $376.1 million. That translates to a property tax increase of about 12.13 cents per hundred dollars of property valuation. That number, however, could still change.

"It's up to [the school board] which schools they want to include," Kincannon said. "My recommendation is for the full package that was recommended by the community advisory committee."

As for a timeline, design work on Waco High School has already started. If the bond passes in November, construction could start as early as the spring.

G.W. Carver's reconstruction would also be made a priority after last week's fire.

"I expect that we will move the timeline up for Carver," Kincannon said.

She's hopeful that the school could reopen to students by the fall of 2023.

Construction of the other schools would follow soon after the construction of Waco High and Carver.

As for the tax increase, school board president Angela Tekell said she knows that it may be a difficult decision for voters, but that's why so much studying and community input was included in the proposal.

"The kids in Waco ISD are entitled to the same opportunities no matter where you live in the district," Tekell said.

Given the board's involvement with the community advisory committee, Kincannon is hopeful that the board will decide to put the bond to a vote in November.

More information about Thursday's board meeting and recordings or previous school board meetings can be found on Waco ISD's website.