Letters to the Editor for Jan. 19, 2017

Camas School District seeks support for levies

The Camas community has a long standing tradition of partnering with schools in support of our students. As your superintendent, I get to see first hand the amazing work of staff, students, parents, and our community in ensuring our students have the best education possible. This would not happen without our community partnership.

Part of that partnership includes local funding. Public education funding in Washington state relies heavily on local taxes.

In Camas, the levies currently fund about 20 percent of total education costs. Our current school levies will expire in 2017.

It is time to ask for your renewed commitment to great community schools by supporting the Camas School District replacement levies on Feb. 14. Approving the proposed levies simply continue local funding so critical to the daily operations of our district.

The maintenance and operations replacement levy funds services and materials critical to overall student success. Examples include: smaller class sizes; special education services; accelerated programs for students; extracurricular programs, like athletics, band, drama and academic teams; student health and media services; student safety initiatives; teacher training; and basic needs such as maintenance, utilities, and textbook and curriculum materials.

Our technology levy provides for infrastructure like networks, servers and wifi, and also the devices our students use.

Levy funds help bridge the gap between state funding and what it actually costs to operate our schools.

Funding both the operations and technology replacement levies is a continued investment in our children’s future, an investment that has helped us build and sustain strong schools, one of our community’s greatest assets.

If you have any questions about the levies, please visit the district website or reach out to our staff.

Remember to vote — ballots are due Feb. 14.

Jeff Snell, Camas School District superintendent

Help maintain high quality schools in Washougal

Washougal citizens need to continue to support the quality education of our students.

Programs like sports and technology provide for a well-rounded education for our students.

When my daughter applied at the University of Montana her application was judged not only on her grades, but other school activities that she was involved in. The additional activities make for a well-rounded education. Please support the high quality of education in Washougal and pass the replacement levy on Feb. 14.

Larry Keister, Washougal

Keep Camas schools great

For over 20 years I’ve witnessed a constantly improving and growing school district here in Camas.

Our three kids attended the schools here and are now on to their young adult lives. I feel like I’ve been a part of a community that over those 20 years has come together to provide educational opportunities for a wide variety of learners and extracurricular opportunities for a anyone who wants to, well, do a little bit extra after school.

This community — the city, the citizens and the teachers and administrators — have bonded into a high performing unit that benefits all of us. Strong schools beget a strong community and vice versa. A vibrant downtown Camas spins off from confident citizens. And confident Camas citizens feel really good about our future.

And yes, even those of us whose children have moved on to the rest of their lives benefit from this really great community. And it’s for that reason that I strongly encourage all of us Camas voters, young and old alike, to vote “yes” for the two replacement levies on the February ballot. A “yes” vote will assure the continuation of everything we’ve built in this community – of and for all of us.

Mark Klein, Camas