Information and FAQs
The major areas of need identified in the town hall meetings include:
- Safety, Security and Health
- General Maintenance, Repairs and Renovations
- Middle School Science Labs
Q: What is a bond issue?
A: A bond issue is a traditional way for schools to borrow money to pay for major school maintenance and repair projects such as replacing old roofs or HVAC units or making upgrades to worn-out areas.
Q: How does a bond issue work?
A: When voters approve/pass a bond issue, Parkway obtains bids and sells bonds to the purchaser who offers the lowest interest rate. The district uses the funds to complete the capital projects and pays back the debt over time. This process is similar to a home loan. When you purchase a home, you borrow money at a specific interest rate. You make payments on that loan, which include principal and interest, over a period of years. A certain amount of your regular income is budgeted to make those payments.
Q: When was Parkway’s last bond issue (before Prop S in 2014)?
A: In 2008. Projects from that bond issue were completed in the summer of 2013 which is when the Facilities 2020 planning team began studying future repair and renovation needs in the schools. Due to the age of our schools, Parkway typically asks the community to approve a bond issue about every four to five years. The next bond proposal is tentatively scheduled for the 2018-19 school year.
Q: How do schools use bond issues to benefit students?
A: Bond issues allow schools to pay for costly repairs and renovation over time instead of having to pay all at once. It also allows schools to devote most of their day-to-day operating budgets for classroom instruction instead of major repair work.
Q: How will the funds be used?
A: Each summer from 2015 to 2018, funds will be allocated as shown here (master project list and school-by-school project list). The major categories of need identified include: Safety, security and health; general maintenance, repairs and renovations; middle school science labs; and technology.
Q: Can the funds be used in any other way?
A: No. The money from bond issues can only be used for capital expenditures such as major maintenance, repair, renovation and certain technology costs. Bond funds may not be used for operating expenses such as salaries and benefits, transportation costs, utilities, textbooks or other supplies.
Q: Why was this bond issue needed?
A: Parkway has more than 3 million square feet of facilities with a replacement value of more than $850 million. That’s roughly the size of three Busch baseball stadiums. These buildings are well-constructed, but require ongoing maintenance, repair and renovation just like our homes. The district has a responsibility to ensure these facilities are properly maintained for future generations of students.
Q: How old is the average Parkway school?
A: 45 years. Most Parkway schools were built between 1963 and 1971. In fact, of the 28 schools currently in operation (K-12):
- 21 are between 40 and 75 years old;
- 5 are between 30 and 39 years old; and
- 2 are less than 30 years old.
Q: How much debt does Parkway have?
A: Parkway has been fiscally conservative and currently only has 3.4 percent of its assessed value in debt. The state allows school districts to borrow up to 15 percent of their assessed value.