VELMA, Okla. (TNN) - Renovations to the school’s auditorium, football field house and security system are just a few improvements Velma - Alma Public Schools will see if a $765,000 school bond is passed.
The bond would allow the school to tackle five projects they say have been needed for a while. When bonds are passed, they usually are paid for with an increase in property taxes, but that wouldn’t be the case for this one. Superintendent Raymond Rice said tax rates would stay the same, as this bond replaces an old bond that is expiring. The biggest portion of the bond money would go towards renovating the school’s auditorium, built nearly 70 years ago.
"That facility hasn’t been touched since it was built. So, the things we’re looking at is new seating, new flooring, new lighting, the stage will be refinished, new spotlights. It’ll be very modern when it’s complete,” Rice said.
A remodel would also be done to the showers and restrooms at the football field house. The district would also purchase a new activity bus, replacing one that is about 20 years old. In addition, fifty security cameras would be purchased for both inside and outside the school.
"The security of our students is priority 1. We have to be vigilant and do the very best that we can do to keep our students safe,” Rice said.
Velma - Alma Elementary teacher and 2000 Velma High School graduate Cassie Russell said the proposed changes have been needed since she was in school.
"I was in that auditorium my entire life, kindergarten to senior, and it looks the same today as it did then. Field House, same thing, hasn’t been touched. The bus, I remember as a sophomore getting the bus we have now, being so excited to have that, we had never had anything like that. We’ve put it to good use but it’s definitely, it’s done it’s time and needs to be replaced,” Russell said.
Russell said the bond passing could have a huge impact on the students’ education.
"Everybody likes nice new things, we take pride in our community around here, we take pride in the things we have. We like nice things. We like to take care of our things. I think it’s great, I think it’s going to give everybody a new fresh start,” Russell said.