Sports, tax increases on ballot for Appo

By Michelle Provencher 1:18am, November 14, 2012 - Updated 3:17pm, November 14, 2012
WDEL's Michelle Provencher gets answers about Appoquinimink School District's upcoming referendum.
Middle schools in Appoquinimink may finally have sports teams. The Board of Ed is putting the $400,000 line item up to a public vote.

President of the Board Julie Johnson says many community members have asked for the creation of sports teams for their middle schoolers.

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"There has been a request to see some middle school sports and it gives the community a chance to say, 'Yes, that is something that we want and are willing to pay for it through our taxes. Or no, this is not something this community thinks is an important item right now.'"

This will be the school district's first referendum in seven years, and the Board of Education voted on what exactly it will mean for students and parents on Tuesday night.

The board deliberated for five hours over what to cut -- such as postponing computer upgrades -- and what to keep -- re-opening Townsend Elementary as scheduled -- in order to get out of the red.

Along with after school activities, Appoquinimink residents will be voting on the approval of $15 million worth of improvements in the district, such as leaky roofs, camera and security systems, and getting Smartboards for the more than 100 classrooms still without them.

Board of Ed President Julie Johnson says there is more than one reason why Appoquinimink needs this referendum.

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"Well, we had a lot of state cuts since 2008, that was a big impact. We've had less growth since 2008 than what we've had in previous years,so that certainly impacted...six years later here we are," says Johnson.

District residents will decide whether they approve the property tax increases required to keep public schools afloat in February.

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