A few hundred residents attended last nights presentation by Mehlville School Superintendent Dr. Chris Gains where he outlined the current state of the district.
The theme of the presentation; how round after round of budget cuts in the past decade were affecting the children in the district.
In November the district will ask voters for a property tax increase of about $140 a year on a $150,000 house.
The district says the money would pay for more teachers, technology, transportation and more after cutting roughly $60 million over the past 10 years from school budgets.
Dr. Gaines says the district is facing another $3 million to $4 million in cuts from its roughly $100 million budget.
Academic performance has slid, particularly in the last five to six years, Gaines said.
Mehlville schools have gone from ranking among the top 60 school districts in the state, according to performance on standardized exams, to ranking in the 130s.
The predominantly white population is becoming increasingly low-income and diverse.
In one kindergarten classroom of 25 children, nine languages are spoken.
Those opposed to the tax increase say money has been wasted in the past and that they don’t trust the school board to spend it wisely.
The Post-Dispatch, KMOV, KPLR/FOX2, KMOX and KDSK covered the event locally.
KSDK once again mis-reported the facts, stating that a tax increase had not been passed in the district since the 1980’s when in fact in April, 1998 voters approved the sales-tax rollback, which resulted in a 33-cent tax-rate increase.
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