GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — Georgetown Independent School District voters will decide this November whether to approve a $381 million bond package.
The bond is the largest the district has issued yet. In 2018, voters approved a $150.5 million bond package and a $160.6 million bond in 2015. The 2021 bond also follows a three-year cycle.
A big part of the bond not only addresses growth in the district but also innovation for students.
“I tell my students all the time, they are very fortunate,” said Robert Thomas, Georgetown High School innovation teacher. “This is the kind of environment that enables real-world skill building for jobs of the future.”
Thomas helped launch Georgetown High School’s Eagle Innovation Center about three years ago. It’s a place for the future engineers and designers of the world to ignite their passions. The center came to life using 2015 voter-approved bond funds.
“I want to major in mechanical engineering in college,” said Collier Bryant. “This was a cool outlet for me to embrace that. It makes me feel valued that we have certain programs like this that help us broaden our realm of engineering.”
Bryant is a student in Thomas’ drone class and club at Georgetown High. He’s on his way to getting his drone pilot license thanks to the class — a qualification he hopes to use for real estate drone photography.
“The future really campus, which is on the bond this year, is going to enable us to do everything we do here times 10,” said Thomas.
Georgetown ISD is looking to launch something similar (if the 2021 bond proposal goes through) called the Future Ready Center. The center is part of Proposition A on the 2021 bond, which is valued at about $333 million.
Georgetown Superintendent Dr. Fred Brent says Prop. A addresses the growth in the district and aging schools.
“We’re expecting to have roughly 5,000 new students within the next 10 years,” said Dr. Fred Brent.
Prop A would also add two new elementary and middle schools. There are five propositions that total $381 million.
Proposition A ($333,420,000) includes:
- Construction of two new elementary schools, a new middle school facility and a future-ready complex that would house advanced career and technical programs, Richarte High School, the Bridges 18+ program, Early Learning Center and the GISD Health & Wellness Center;
- Land acquisition and design for future facilities
- Upgraded safety and security infrastructure/equipment;
- Ag barns at East View and Georgetown High School;
- HVAC and roof upgrades/replacements; and
- Buses and maintenance vehicles
Proposition B ($16,500,000) includes technology to support the district’s one-to-one initiative, as well as improve the infrastructure to support connectivity.
Proposition C ($7,300,000) would renovate the interior finishes at the Klett Performing Arts Center.
Proposition D ($23,600,000) would provide for a district swim facility.
Proposition E ($850,000) would provide renovations to the tennis courts at Georgetown High.
“Our conservative projection is a 2.6% increase on a $100 property value,” said Dr. Brent.
Dr. Brent expects that to come out to $112 for someone who has a home valued at $430,000. Georgetown officials also said the tax impact could be less than projected if the district’s tax base grows more than anticipated.