• Tulsa Public Schools hopeful for bond approval

    By: Angela Hong

    Updated:

    TULSA, Okla. - Tulsa Public Schools officials told FOX23 that they feel confident ahead of Tuesday’s bond election, despite low voter turnout Tuesday.

    Voters will decide whether to approve a $415 million bond.
     
    The last TPS bond election was in May 2013, when 10 percent of eligible voters came to the polls. That bond passed by 66 percent.

    As long as the weather holds up, the district hopes for a high voter turnout.

    "(It's just for) all the kids. They need all the help they can get,” said Sharon Price, who has grandchildren in the district.

    Price said she plans to vote in favor of the package.

    “Because I will support anything that is educational. I mean, we need to just support our schools,” she said.

    For the past several weeks, the school district has campaigned heavily on TV and social media to appeal to voters.
     
    The district said the bond package will improve school facilities, security and technology over the next five to six years.


    http://media.cmgdigital.com/shared/img/photos/2015/03/02/6f/e9/Bond_pie_chart.jpg


    “There is a real need for more technology and access. There is concern about some of our children that may not have families who can afford what they need,” Tulsa Public Schools spokesman Chris Payne said.

    This bond would enable each TPS student to have a laptop or tablet.

    Of that package, $240 million would be used for facility improvements. Two -thirds of the district's classroom trailers will be removed and replaced with permanent classrooms if the bond passes.

    There will also be storm shelters built and major technology updates.
     
    Chris Brabitz, whose wife works as a TPS paraprofessional, said he is voting yes.

    “It's a lot of money, but you have to look at it as an investment in your kids, and that's the bottom line,” Brabitz said.

    The district said tax rates will remain the same if voters approve the bond.

    The district said there will likely not be another bond election in Tulsa until 2020. The measure needs 60 percent of the vote to pass.

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