'Tis the Season of Giving in Lake Washington School District (LWSD). Each year schools and district buildings across LWSD think of ways to benefit those most in need during the holiday season.
Capital Projects Levy
Purpose of a Capital Projects Levy
A capital projects levy provides funding for items that require a larger sum to acquire, improve or maintain a school building or a technology solution.
The state provides a minimum amount of funding for technology in schools. At the same time, the need for technology in our school district is growing. More and more traditional book-based curricula include digital resources. Other educational software programs can supplement learning or give students who need extra help another way to learn. Classroom technology enables teachers to enhance classroom learning. The district’s Mobile Access for Students program ensures students can use individual computing power that is aimed at learning in class or at home.
In addition, running a school district creates the same needs for business systems that a corporation with a budget of more than $250 million would need. In fact, those business systems are critical since the district must report to the state, the federal government and to community members how each dollar is spent.
Increasing dependence on technology, including the use of more than 21,000 student computers, requires increasing amounts of infrastructure, support and staff expertise. Technology support for 29,500 students and 3,300 staff helps keep the district running.
Capital projects also ensure that buildings and sites are kept up over time. Major systems like roofs, hot water systems, lighting, and flooring are replaced or upgraded on a life cycle basis. Physical education and athletic facilities can be renovated to ensure safety. Health and safety upgrades to buildings can be installed.
During phases 1 and 2 of the district’s modernization program, a total of 21 aging school buildings were replaced and/or renovated. There is less need for facilities capital projects as fewer buildings in our district are old enough to reach the end of the life cycles of major systems. However, capital projects are still needed to ensure that major building and site systems are replaced when at the end of their useful life or that upgrades are made for educational or health and safety reasons.
- Replaces the previous levy, which expires at the end of 2018, with no tax rate increase. This levy is on a four-year replacement cycle.
- Authorizes collection for four years of an annual levy for capital each year.
- Will expire at the end of 2022.
- Includes funding for both district facilities and for technology.