By Shawn Byrne
Upgrades to tired buildings and classrooms, and the first step toward a high school program, are now reality for Nadaburg Unified School District after voters passed a school bond worth $2.4 million on Nov. 5.
“I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all our volunteers who worked to pass this historic bond,” district Superintendent Dr. Aspasia Angelou posted to the district’s Facebook page Saturday when the results became official. “It is historic not because of the amount of funding, but what it will mean to our students, families, and local businesses to have a well-planned preK-12 district. We have the opportunity to create innovative and relevant programming so students are prepared for the future that interests them.”
The news for property owners is the impact will only be about $37 per year to the average assessed home value of $138,171.
“This was a hard decision for many and we respect that,” Angelyou posted. “Thank you, all, for a record turnout and your support.”
The bond was approved by 66 votes out of 1,878 cast, according to Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes. The official tally came in as 969-903 with six votes not counted. Now that the bond has passed, it’s time for NUSD to get to work.
“I have already started planning the vision and programming for dual track, associate degree or industry certification for all of our students,” Angelyou told The Sun. “This is the path we want to take. There will be certification pathways for the teachers who want to be high school certified, and we’ll be taking bids for the remodeling that is needed.”
NUSD told its community that 43 percent of the bond funding will go to science and technology in the form of laptop computers, Chromebooks, and laboratory space improvements. The new high school program will use up 21 percent for a server, switches, phone handsets, wireless access points, and classroom renovations specifically for a high school. A cyber security program will take up 20 percent, and renovations and upgrades for the playgrounds, furniture, sealing buildings, and carpet will account for the remaining 16 percent.
Another item that needs work is the piece legislation set to expire June 30 giving NUSD the full amount of tuition it pays to the Wickenburg and Dysart school districts for Nadaburg’s high school students. State Rep. Joanne Osborne (R-Goodyear) and state Sen. Sine Kerr (R-Buckeye) are working to move new legislation forward for Nadaburg, and the passing of the school bond should help its cause.
“It would be logistically impossible to pay that,” Angelyou said. “They will support our request.”
The first tallying of unofficial votes came the night of the election and approval for the bond stood at a 13-vote differential, 806-793 in favor. That slim margin had the superintendent on edge and not quite ready to pop any corks from champagne bottles.
“We are super excited,” she said before the vote became official. “We are cautiously optimistic.”