DEARBORN — Dearborn residents interested in getting more information on Dearborn Public School’s proposed BRICS bond can still attend DPS planned informational meetings through October.
A question on the November 5 ballot will ask residents to approve a new $240 million bond for the district. The new bonds will not increase the current tax rate since it will replace other bonds that are expiring.
DPS has said that while residents would not see their tax rate increase, the district could make some much needed repairs and upgrades.
DPS chose the nickname BRICS to make clear that it planned to use the funds for structural repairs across the school district. The acronym stands for Buildings, Renovations, Infrastructure, Capacity and Safety.
According to DPS, the average age of its 34 buildings is 65-years-old, with 12 schools between 60- and 70-years-old and 12 more approaching 100-years-old.
The buildings equate to 3 million square feet of space.
About $194 million would go to buildings, renovations and infrastructure. Capacity would account for about $22 million, technology $14 million and security $12 million.
The bond came into inception two years ago after overcrowding in two DPS high schools led to the creation of the Citizen’s Infrastructure Task Force. The task force researched district issues and reported its findings to the Board of Education last October.
The task force recommended infrastructure, capacity and safety improvements. It included air conditioning as a separate item for consideration.
DPS has a set up a blog site for the information and updates regarding BRICS and is expected to schedule more informational meetings in the future. A full list of coming informational meetings and web links appears at the end of this article.
Some in Dearborn are not thrilled by the proposal.
Eric Alzeroua has organized a group against the millage and says he is appalled by the district’s request for another bond.
“For too long we have stayed silent to a system that has misrepresented, underserved, misled and taken advantage of us,” he said. “Previously, millages have been voted on blindly and approved by taxpayers without knowing the impact or consequence they will have.
“Meanwhile, our schools are not making the grade and we have a vaping and drug epidemic. Our parks are a mess, public services leave a lot to be desired and our property taxes are astronomical and among the highest in the country. Unfortunately, all this will stay the same until we replace the people who are mostly responsible for this.”
Alzeroua has said he is not against education per se, but against wasteful spending and mismanagement of tax dollars.
DPS representatives have responded to this criticism by indicating how previous bond money was spent on needed repairs, with projects coming in on time and on budget.
It also cites, among other reasons, neighboring school districts that have implemented such bonds to make improvements on their infrastructure.
A full list of FAQs is available here: https://iblog.dearbornschools.org/bond/faqs
Supporting documents, including an informational flyer in Arabic, can be found in the documents section: https://iblog.dearbornschools.org/bond/publications
The district has been routinely updating the website with new information.
- Miller Elementary, 4824 Lois, Sept. 27 at 9 a.m.
- Geer Park Elementary, 14767 Prospect , Sept. 27, 9:15 a.m.
- William Ford Elementary, 14749 Alber, Oct. 2 at 9 a.m.
- Stout Middle, 18500 Oakwood, Oct. 2 at 9:30 a.m.
- Edsel Ford High, 20601 Rotunda, Oct. 2 at 7 p.m.
- Whitmore Bolles Elementary, 21501 Whitmore, Oct. 7 at 6 p.m.
- Maples Elementary, 6801 Mead Street, Oct. 9 at 9 a.m.
- Oakman Elementary, 7545 Chase Road, Oct. 11 at 9 a.m.
- Smith Middle, 23851 Yale, Oct. 15 at 6:30 p.m.
- McCollough Elementary, 7801 Maple, Oct. 16 at 9:30 a.m.
- Unis Middle, 7801 Maple, Oct. 16 at 9: 30 a.m.
- Long Elementary, 3100 Westwood, Oct. 16 at 6:30 p.m.
- Cotter School, 13020 Osborn St., Oct. 17 at 9:15 a.m.
- McDonald Elementary, 10151 Diversey, Oct. 18 at 9 a.m.
- Dearborn High, 19501 Outer Drive, Oct. 21 at 7 p.m.
- Haigh Elementary, 601 N. Silvery Lane , Oct. 22 at 6 p.m.
- Salina Intermediate, 2623 Salina, Oct. 23 at 8:15 a.m.
- Lowrey School, 6601 Jonathon, Oct. 24 at 8:30 a.m.
- Snow Elementary, 2000 Culver, Oct. 25 at 8:30 a.m.
- Becker Elementary, 10821 Henson, Oct. 25 at 9 a.m.