FEBRUARY 23, 1996
Let me begin by saying that school district employees may not use school time, material or resources to support, or oppose, the Seattle school levy. This memo is being written and typed after school hours and it is being printed on paper which I purchased. The purpose of this memo is three-fold. First, I want to explain some simple facts about the levy. Second, I want to let you know what some of the possible ramifications of a levy failure might be. Third, I want to share with you some ideas which have been suggested to help pass the levy in March.
(Let me add that this World Wide Web edition is also produced in accordance with the guidelines Mr. Leatherman has outlined above. No school district time, equipment or resources were used in the preparation of this document, or in the maintenance or support of this web site. - Mark Ahlness)
Facts About the Levy
- This levy will provide 23% of our school district's budget for the next two years.
- It is not a "new" tax. This measure seeks renewal of the current two-year levy. Levies are placed on the ballot every two years.
- The current levy tax rate is $l.70 per $l,000 of assessed value of a home. The proposed rates would be:
l997 - $l.79 per $l,000 assessed valuation
l998 - $l.68 per $l,000 assessed valuation
- In February the levy received over a 58% yes vote. A 60% yes vote is needed.
- Levy money is used for such things as staff salary, supplies and equipment, special education, bilingual education, field trips, all day kindergarten, athletics, transportation, administrative support, etc.
Possible Ramification of a Levy Failure
- Teachers with l5 years of service or less could lose their jobs.
- A large number of classified staff could lose their jobs.
- Programs such as all day kindergarten, athletics, special education, bilingual education, etc. could be cut.
- Specialists in the area of P.E., Music, Art, Computer, Science, etc. could lose their jobs. These programs might all have to be covered by the regular classroom teachers.
Suggested Ideas to Help Pass the Levy
- Each school community has been asked to come up with $l,000 to help pay for the costs of advertising and resubmitting the levy. Checks should be made out to Schools First, and sent to our school office (Arbor Heights School, 370l S.W. l04th St. Seattle, Wa. 98l46). Any amount will help us to meet our goal.
- We have been asked to form a 3-5 member leadership team. I'm not sure what this will involve, but if you'd like to be included, please call the school (28l-6230) and let me know.
- A school rally will take place this Saturday at 9:00 a.m. (2328 6th Ave. - corner of 6th and Battery). Packets and organizing instructions will be picked up then. I will be there. Feel free to join me if you'd like to.
- A campaign kick-off will be held on Wednesday, February 28th, from 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. at 6th & Battery. Kids and adults are welcome. Yard signs, fact sheets, etc. will be passed out.
- More events are being planned. I'll keep you posted.