Eagleswood School District attempts second referendum next month
Voters in the Eagleswood School District again will be asked to decide on a nearly $4.4 million referendum on March 8, six months after rejecting the same two-part measure seeking funding for facility upgrades and an addition to Eagleswood Elementary on Route 9.
District Superintendent Deborah Snyder said a group, the Parent Advocates for Eagleswood, has been going door to door to make sure everyone in the Township is educated about the grave needs in the school.
"We're hoping that by everyone being well educated, having all the facts, that the vote will be a yes this time when we go out on March 8," said Snyder.
The first questions seeks $2,815,510 for the installation of a working, reliable, and more efficient heating and air conditioning system, the upgrade of broken and failing kitchen equipment in the cafeteria, repairs to parking lot pot holes and sidewalk cracks, and other facility alterations, of which 40 percent would be covered by state funding, according to Snyder.
"It's really the nuts and bolts of what we need to keep this building running," Snyder said of the first question.
The second question seeks $1,577,500, of which 20 percent would be covered by state funding, according to Snyder.
"This is for a new addition, which would consist of three small classrooms, and what's happening is that the educational needs, in particular, for special needs students is growing, and we are running out of space to provide services such as speech, OT/PT Special Ed. So, our hope is that by having this small addition, we can provide the services that our children need and our goal also for the future is to have as many special needs students stay in the building, instead of having to send them out to other districts to receive their education," said Snyder.
Snyder touted Eagleswood Elementary as being a hidden gem because it has the feel of a private school. The District consists of 157 students.
Snyder pointed out that the first question can pass on its own if the second question fails.
"It cannot go the other way though. Question 2 can't pass without question 1," she said.
Eagleswood residents owning an average $245,000 home would pay $119 more a year to fund the first question and $90 to fund the second question, according to Snyder.
If the referendum fails, the District will be in the position of not knowing when and if something is going to break and how it is going to be repaired, according to Snyder.
"We have been in touch with the Department of Ed through our county services, and basically what they're advising us is that, when something breaks, will be meeting with them and coming up with a plan, but of course, we can't have school without heat, and that's probably our number one concern, which is why referendum question number one in particular, is so important," added Snyder.
The referendum is set for Tuesday, March 8. Polls will be open from 2 to 9 p.m.
To learn more about the referendum, go to www.eagleswood.org.