New Houston County ESPLOST proposal affects every school
“The thing that sets us apart is our employees, our teachers in the classroom. We’ve got great things going on,” said Houston County Schools Superintendent Dr. Mark Scott.
The district wants to continue this movement. Residents will get to vote on a new E-SPLOST in March.
“The target for us is $135 million. Last E-SPLOST was $125,” explained Dr. Scott.
Dr. Scott said the 2012 special local option penny sales tax paid for two new schools, laptop labs in every schoo and building renovations.
“[We went] in and [removed] over 320,000 square feet of old carpet and replaced it with tile. That was mainly in the common areas in the hallways of our schools. The average age of our school buildings are 30 years old,” said Dr. Scott.
District leaders feel more improvements are needed. The new E-SPLOST project list includes technology improvements and safety upgrades.
“In some places, we’re doing or replacing access controls to where teachers and employees have access, but other people do not. We want to continue to upgrade out infrastructure as far as our security camera system goes,” explained Dr. Scott.
A new elementary school will be built if the E-SPLOST passes.
“Our system has continued to grow. We’re over 28,500 students. We grew 350 kids this year. We’re going to continue to grow. There’s no reason to believe that we won’t. If you look at it, we’ve grown an average of about 400 students over the last 10 years every year,” recalled Dr. Scott.
Improving parking and traffic flow at 11 schools and fixing athletic facilities at every high school are also a priority for the school system. To learn more about the E-SPLOST project list click here.
The Committee for Excellence in Education supports the new E-SPLOST. The group will hold multiple presentations from now until election day. There is a meeting scheduled for Thursday January 21 at 6:00 p.m. at the Robins Financial Credit Union Learning Center on Robins Drive. Dr. Scott will be talking about proposed projects and answering questions.