Survey: Faith in schools may carry bond measure

Many inclined to approve $350 million bond for schools despite uncertainty about need or use for funds

Well over two thirds of voters in Palo Alto will support a bond measure to raise money for schools even if they don't know why the money is needed or how it will be used, according to a new survey presented at Tuesday's school board meeting.

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Posted by RWE
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 26, 2007 at 8:57 am

This is a very heartening study, showing that our citizens value our schools, and will not let the recent downturn in quality decisions from the BOE affect the sustainability of PAUSD

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Posted by Lynn
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 26, 2007 at 10:56 am

Yes, it's heartening, but it's also important to bear in mind that the board can only place a bond measure on the ballot. After that, members cannot discuss or promote it. As with the Measure A parcel tax in 2005, raising awareness about the bond and getting people to vote for it will require hundreds of citizen boots on the ground.

I'm concerned that those who would serve as the foot soldiers in this effort are the ones who follow school district politics closely enough to be disgusted and fed up with the results of their efforts in the past, such as myself.

Even with broad community support for a bond, district management and the school board have a long way to go to rebuild trust among those who can make it happen.

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Posted by Carol Mullen
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 26, 2007 at 4:05 pm

If the survey results were correct, then volunteers won't be needed. A blank check doesn't require much thinking.

But why would anyone fund a survey to ask if people would vote "yes" for a blank check? That's hard to swallow. Sounds as if the BOE were looking for proof that they hadn't harmed the district.

The schools have a great chance to get their house in order, and tap the pool of voters otherwise more committed to the City than to the schools.

In that sense, the Council has done the schools a favor by retaining Benest. I hope the new BOE don't waste it.

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Posted by Ear to the Ground
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 27, 2007 at 8:54 am

Yes, I wonder when this survey was commissioned, and by whose authority? It is a very odd survey. Even I would probably be forced to answer in a way that would like like I would just vote for a blank check etc, because of the way the questions are written.

I give it no merit as a reality for the future. Like the poster above said, the REAL workers who pull this kind of thing off are "in the know" in the District. It would have been better to poll all the major school and PiE volunteers in the District and ask them if, in the absence of any other info or changes, will they be willing to put in a hundred hours each in about 6 months to drive a Tax through?

We love our school district, of course, that is why we work our tails off and give so much. But, I know only about 10-20% of "knowledgeable" high volunteer types who would do anything at all to bring more money to this District until we can trust that the new Sup and the new Board is going to work toward goals we can support.

Granted, I don't know how everyone thinks, just an impression from my side of the "pond".

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