Survey respondents prioritized 13 proposed projects that would have been funded by the Scotland County R-I  Proposition 2 tax levy proposal that was defeated on the April ballot.

Survey respondents prioritized 13 proposed projects that would have been funded by the Scotland County R-I Proposition 2 tax levy proposal that was defeated on the April ballot.

The Scotland County R-I School Board of Education met in special session on Monday, May 2 to review the Proposition 2 surveys that were submitted by  stakeholders from the community.

More than 200 responses were received both online and via printed surveys submitted at various locations.

“We would like to thank everyone for their time and effort as this information will be extremely valuable moving forward,” said Superintendent Ryan Bergeson.

All surveys were entered into the online data base accounting for a total of 256 surveys.  The survey information was reviewed at the special board meeting on May 2 and led to a healthy three-hour discussion.

Of the survey respondents who answered question four, demographics for the results were established, denoting that nearly half of those who submitted survey’s were parents of children in the elementary school age group, while 25% of respondents indicated they had children of high school age, with a similar percentage having children age five and younger. While 16.5% of respondents were affiliated with the SCR-I district, 31.6% of respondents described themselves as community members with no children in school.

“We were pleased with the total number of responses as well as with the wide range of respondents representing the full spectrum of voters,” said Bergeson.

Just under 60% of survey respondents indicated they supported the proposed $4 million tax levy that failed in the April election with just a 44.5% voter approval.

Approximately 20% of respondents indicated they were opposed to a tax increase, while 20.7 percent indicated some of the projects proposed for the project were the reason they opposed the proposition.

The survey offered participants the opportunity to rank 13 different projects which had been proposed for funding as part of the tax levy.

The pre-school, early childhood development classrooms was ranked a top priority on 31% of the surveys, and averaged a 10.11 ranking, with the top priority receiving 13 points and the last priority receiving one point.

Replacing the life skills training room and relocating it as part of the school facility was the second top priority, with a 9.73 average score, followed by upgrading the elementary school heating, air conditioning and ventilation systems with a 9.35 average, and improving the high school security system, with a 9.16 average score. All three were listed as a top priority on at least 30 surveys.

Replacing the football locker room was the lowest priority with a 3.33 average score. A new weight room scored 3.79 on the priority list with a new all-weather track coming in third from the bottom on the priority list with a 4.31 score. New lights for the baseball, softball and football fields was fourth from the bottom with a 4.59 score.

Ranking in the middle of the spectrum of priorities for the survey recipients was: high school special education room replacement (8.39 average score); physical, occupational and speech therapy rooms (8.02); elementary school library replacement (7.74); high school learning lab replacement (7.01); and band room replacement (6.69).

An overwhelming majority of survey respondents (88.75%) indicated they would support a tax levy issue if the projects were prioritized according to the survey responses.