By Linda Velluti, Gig Harbor
Children belong in safe, quality environments, and that includes their schools.
I have no children, but the value of education is deeply rooted in my family history. I taught third and fourth grades in a poor district where the classrooms were overcrowded and in need of repair.
Connor Pavlik-Brindl, Student, Discovery Elementary
My name is Connor Pavlik-Brindl, and I am a fourth-grade student at Discovery Elementary.
On Feb. 12, 2019, our community will be voting again on a Capital Projects Bond. This is my second year in a portable. Have you ever taken a test in a portable? I have. The walls are very thin in the portables, and you can usually hear other teachers teaching. It can be very distracting if we are trying to take a test or just learn.
Chuck West, Lakebay
I love Evergreen Elementary School. It’s our little jewel in the south end. But it’s bursting at the seams. Built to house 182, we already have 246 students, or 35 percent over capacity. That’s 14 classrooms, six of which are in portables.
Meghan Conant, PTA President, Evergreen Elementary
Whatever stage of life you find yourself - regardless of whether you have school age children, are newlywed, a retiree or anywhere in between––we all benefit from great schools. Past generations built schools for children who are now grown up, and we should support our future generations by building schools for them.
Art Jarvis Ph.D., Interim Superintendent, Peninsula School District.
The Voice of Experience
I am the interim superintendent of the Peninsula School District. Over these past three months, it has been my honor to join this community and learn much more about the schools, parents and community at large.
My history includes over 50 years in the education business and over 30 years as superintendent. I offer that fact as the background for my next observation—this is a very special place. The beauty of this peninsula region would be impossible to miss, but the quality of the schools and school district might be less known to some.
By George Robison, Gig Harbor
Re: “Superintendent says Peninsula schools are now out of space,” (TNT, 12/12).
Thank you for publishing the explanation of the February Peninsula School District bond issue from Superintendent Art Jarvis.
I am 87 and it has been a long time since my children were in school, but I have great grandchildren who deserve and need a good education, brought to them by teachers with adequate facilities to lead our youth into the future.
By Jake Gregg of the Peninsula Gateway
The Peninsula Gateway spoke with interim Superintendent Art Jarvis about the latest bond request and why the district believes it is needed. His answers have been edited for length and clarity.
We ask you to vote yes on the Peninsula School District bond to provide current and future students with the facilities they need to learn and excel. When we were in school (graduates of the classes of 2001-2010), we saw the beginnings of the significant challenges facing facilities today. We studied in portables. We studied in aging science classrooms, or worse, off of carts. We saw the effects of leaky roofs.
By Lance Hester, Gig Harbor
Our students deserve safety and equal accessibility. I was a member of the Facilities Planning Committee, a large team that evaluated our schools. Facing the reality of school shootings, like Sandy Hook, I counted 26 unsecured entry points at Peninsula High School. I later learned Gig Harbor has 36!
By Deb Krishnadasan, Gig Harbor
The measure of our community is the investment we make in our children. Great schools make great communities, and great communities make great schools. Judging by the overwhelming and bipartisan support that Stand Up for Peninsula Schools has received while campaigning for the school bond, our community is strong and our schools will soon be safer and more secure, when this measure passes.
By Marsha Williams, Wauna
Don Snowden's cartoon of April 12 has me scratching my head. Is he saying that he's confused by the bond proposal, or by the naysayers who are trying to obfuscate the issue? Hopefully the latter.
By Thelma L. Channon, Senior Global Real Estate Advisor, Realogics Sotheby's International Realty
High quality schools are a huge driver of where people want to live, more so than ever today. And it’s a proven fact that there is a direct correlation between the quality of local schools and maintaining our home values.
BY LISA M. ANDERSON, Gig Harbor
Most of us work hard, give back and do what we can to make the world a better place. Yet sometimes our efforts feel futile. But today, we can do something to benefit our community and bring lasting change. We can vote to pass the Peninsula school bond to address the unsafe, overcrowded, outdated conditions at our schools.
by T. A. Haight
What is the better way? I see red and white signs advising people to vote no on Peninsula School District’s upcoming bond, with the tagline “There is a Better Way.” The reality is our schools are overcrowded, have leaking roofs, dying HVAC systems, and classes held in portables that were meant to be temporary. Many buildings do not meet current safety codes, and cannot be properly secured in a school-shooting situation.
By Steve Whittier, Gig Harbor
Peninsula School District voters simply must pass the school bond, for safe, uncrowded schools for future generations. The thought of a capital bond failure scares me, how local teachers and students will be negatively impacted.
By Jenny Hampton, Gig Harbor
Peninsula school facilities are in an alarming state of disrepair. They are woefully antiquated and increasingly unsafe. The district is operating on borrowed time.
Judy Burcar, Gig Harbor
My family has deep roots in the Peninsula School District. I graduated from Peninsula High in 1959 and raised two sons who graduated in 1988 and 1991.
Susan Paganelli, Gig Harbor
Like it or not, a measure such as Peninsula School District’s proposed bond needs a 60 percent super majority to pass. What does this mean?
Jennifer Butler, Gig Harbor
The Peninsula School District is taking an accountable and transparent approach to the replacement school bond. By law, 100 percent of the proposed bond funding will go toward the planning, construction and opening of safe, updated classrooms. The district has over a decade of clean audits from the state, and school bond projects are some of the most highly regulated processes in the state. Bond spending will be subject to annual independent audits, and the bond process will be subject to a citizen oversight committee.
Andy Boynton, Gig Harbor
Lately, I’ve seen a bunch of signs around town opposing the Peninsula School District’s capital bond, which will come before voters on April 24. I was struck by the sign’s tagline: “There Is a Better Way.”
The better way, evidently, is a $50 million levy, which sounds remarkably like the one the district put on the ballot five years ago, when labor and material costs were lower and the problems facing our schools were less acute.