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Jackson County School District employees share opinions on spending plan for the $67 million bond

Updated: May. 17, 2021 at 7:54 PM CDT
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VANCLEAVE, Miss. (WLOX) - The $67 million bond proposed for the Jackson County School District has many people concerned about the district’s plans to use these funds to make improvements. The bond proposes that St. Martin schools receive 42% of the funding, money that Assistant Superintendent for the St. Martin Attendance Center David Baggett said will enhance the student experience.

“We’re spending money on 24 classes here at the St. Martin Attendance Center alone,” Baggett said. “We also are in the need for a fine arts performing arts center for our students that do drama, choir, and performances of that nature.”

Vancleave and East Central will each receive 29% of the bond. Tonya Saksa is a teacher at East Central High School and is not in favor of the bond because it does not add any classrooms to East Central High.

“We have teachers that don’t have a classroom,” Saksa said. “They are physically pushing their materials from room to room on a cart because we don’t have enough classrooms.”

Saksa said improvements to the schools are needed more than athletic facilities or performing arts centers.

“It needs to benefit the majority of the students,” Saksa said. “Their safety, their welfare, their education, before all else.”

Extracurricular activities are something that Baggett said will benefit students.

“Statistically you can look nationwide, any students that’s involved in an extracurricular activity, they do better in the classrooms,” Baggett said.

In order for the bond to pass, it must receive 60% of the vote.

Voting precincts will be open on May 18 from 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.

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