To the Editor:
On May 7, the Bessemer Area School District is asking the taxpayers to approve a $6.67 million bond for structural repairs, including roofs, windows, wiring, technological upgrades, furnace replacement and repair and a security system for both schools.
Unfortunately, for the past few years, funding from the state of Michigan has been drastically reduced. However, schools are still expected to provide above par education while maintaining the needs and repairs of their districts.
Because of this decreased funding, the Bessemer district has not been able to set aside money for the much needed improvements in both schools. We have put off major repairs while spending more and more money each year to do little fixes on what we have. These repairs also take away money that can be spent on the students.
Our teachers continue to provide a quality education to their students, even though they must work with building inadequacies, increased class sizes and, along with the rest of the staff, no salary increase in several years.
We have an outstanding administrator who is both principal and superintendent, who has voluntarily taken a cut in pay, but still goes above and beyond his duties for the staff and students. During his watch, our student population has grown. We have more school-of-choice students who come to Bessemer, with more on the waiting list. Some may argue the significance of these students, since their parents do not reside in Bessemer, so they do not pay Bessemer city taxes. However, these students bring in approximately $7,000 each, which helps tremendously in maintaining our district’s needs.
All children deserve a quality education, and by coming to Bessemer, they are receiving one. This bond will not only ensure they are in a safe, secure environment, but will enhance the education they are receiving.
Please vote on May 7.
vice-president, Bessemer Board of Education