Local school districts looking for community support in replacement levies

Local school districts looking for community support in replacement levies

WEST VALLEY, Wash— Eight school districts all over the valley, hoping to secure more funding to serve their students.

The West Valley School District says they're looking to the community to vote ‘yes’ on a replacement levy to offer quality extracurricular activities.

“We believe this levy will maintain the outstanding programs we have, not only during the school day, but also will continue to enrich the lives of our students by offering them enrichment activities after school,” said Superintendent Mike Brophy.

In the levy proposals, taxpayers would pay between $1.50 and $2.16 per $1,000 of the value of their home from 2019 to 2022.

Brophy says they plan to use the money from the levy to support things like team sports, band, choir and drama programs.

In July of 2017, the Washington State Legislature made the decision to provide schools with more state funding, but local school districts still need to turn to levies to cover extra costs.

Brophy says their district emphasizes extracurriculars to keep kids out of trouble.

“If the students don't have the opportunity to participate in the enrichment activities that the levy supports, then those students are gonna find other things to do that may not be as productive, may not be as rewarding, either for the students themselves, or for the community in general,” said Brophy.

Other school districts however, said they plan to use the money raised through the levy, for things such as special education support, school safety and security and programs for highly capable students.

Aside from West Valley, East Valley, Grandview, Granger, Union Gap, Wapato, Prosser, and Zillah school districts are all counting on their communities to vote.

“I believe the West Valley community, as well as all of the communities in the greater Yakima area will support their students and their schools, and they will vote yes. They will support the enrichment levies that are being offered everywhere,” said Brophy.

The deadline to turn in ballots is February 13, by 8:00 p.m.

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