LEWES, Del. - The Cape Henlopen School District held the last of four community meetings at Beacon Middle School Tuesday night to discuss the upcoming referendum to build a new 720 student elementary school.
According to a study done by the University of Delaware, enrollment in the district will go up nearly 1,000 students by 2033. Currently, the schools already have a large number of students per class and are utilizing modular classrooms to fit them in.
"We have a lot of classroom spaces that weren't intended to be classroom spaces," Superintendent Robert Fulton said. "So not just with our enrollment now but our future enrollment we really need to do something different."
The new school would be across the street from Beacon Middle School on Route 24 in Lewes.
The meeting covered why the district needed the new school as well as how it would be paid for. The state is covering 60 per cent of the $31 million budget, but the final 40 per cent would be up to district tax payers.
Property taxes would be raised 10 cents per $100 of assessed home value. That is roughly $59 over three years for the average homeowner.
While, according to Superintendent Fulton, there has been a great deal of support at the meetings, the topic of traffic has caused some people concerns.
Martha Eisenhour lives right around where the new school would be. She said she agrees the district needs another elementary school, but is worried the proposed location could cause traffic problems on Route 24.
"They said DELDOT has committed to improving the roads but we all know DELDOT has a lot of plans but they don't have the money to implement those plans," she said. "So what happens if they don't have the money once the school is built? That's my concern."
Nonetheless, Superintendent Fulton said he feels positive.
"I'm very encouraged by the community turnout and some of the really good questions, about people leaving feeling good about what were trying to do here and feeling very supportive of what were trying to do here," he explained.
The vote will be held Wednesday April 2nd between 10 A.M. and 8 P.M. at Cape Henlopen High School, Mariner Middle School and Rehoboth Elementary School.
Wednesday, July 23 2014 5:21 PM EDT2014-07-23 21:21:33 GMT
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