MARYSVILLE – On a tour at Liberty Elementary School last week, school officials showed why a new one is needed.
They plan to do the same at 5:30 p.m. at Cascade Elementary Thursday. Voters should start receiving their Feb. 11 ballots soon. On it is a school building levy for Marysville for $120 million.
First off, superintendent Jason Thompson told the 30 or so visitors that the teachers there do an amazing job decorating their classrooms to make them warm and inviting. “They take the old building and make it look nice,” he said. The classrooms don’t have doors on them so it’s tough to keep noise from hallways from disturbing students. The hallways themselves are narrow, which can make it tough to keep peace during crowded transition times. One of the biggest problems is temperature, Thompson said. The old heating system is maintained daily and uses radiators, some of which put out no heat and others that are steaming. There are no covers for protection so students could get burned. Luckily the windows do open in case it gets too hot.
Employees try to fix the heating system all the time, but parts are hard to obtain or non-existent.
The school gym also is used as the school cafeteria, along with for concerts and assemblies. The school district allows the public to use that facility, too.
There is no longer room for a computer class so an instructor can only help a few kids at a time in a cubby hole.
There also is no office for occupational therapy for students. That work is done in a hallway with only a curtain used for privacy.
The office for the psychiatrist is in a teacher’s classroom, so a student has no privacy when going there.
Hallways are used for other things, too. That’s where you can find the offices for the school’s paraeducators.
Like most of the other Marysville schools, parking is a problem.
“We want to show the public we can build schools with pick-up and drop-off spots separated from the buses,” Thompson said.
The superintendent found out Friday that the Marysville-Tulalip Chamber of Commerce endorsed the levy.
“We appreciate the chamber supporting it. That means a lot,” he said.
If the levy passes, it would cost the average taxpayer of a $370,000 piece property about $2 a day. The measure would cost $1.93 per $1,000 valuation over six years. It requires a 50 percent vote. There’s an exemption for qualifying seniors. Marysville residents pay about half in taxes for schools than those in nearby communities. Snohomish pays $2,257, Everett $1,981 and Edmonds $1,814. Nearby Lakewood and Arlington pay a little more, at $1,235 and $974, than Marysville, at $930.