This referendum began with good intentions. Yet, without any explanation, it quickly evolved into something entirely different.
A new pool became the top priority and now includes a new fitness center and tennis courts, both of which the school already has. The jazz band featured on the first page of the presentation is indeed one of the finest programs in the district. Theater and choir are also some of the best you'll find anywhere. But all of these programs have been left out of the referendum. Although it made for a great bullet point of the first page of the referendum presentation, not a penny will go to fine arts at the high school.
The "most urgent" needs for roofing at Aldrich and Beloit Memorial High School, have been downgraded and are suddenly less important than the fitness center, the $400,000 elementary school kitchens, new office furniture for the administrators, etc. How can something as basic and essential as roofing needs not be addressed in this 70 million dollar referendum?
Have a look at this initial presentation -- the one the superintendent claims he presented 40 times to the public -- and ask yourself how it could have changed so drastically over just a couple of weeks without school board discussion and approval. It is bewildering at best. To repeat over and over, that listening sessions were provided 40 times and then propose a completely different plan is dishonest, and we believe, a violation of public trust. Beloit deserves better!
The school district's presentation to the public