As stated in last week’s issue of The Downey Patriot, I am writing to publicly express support for Proposition 51 and Proposition 55. I, along with the other six Downey Unified Board of Education members, strongly endorse both of these propositions for the critical reason that they will have a direct positive impact on the students within our district.
If not passed, Proposition 55 will result in severe funding losses that could lead to the cutting of opportunities for students, bringing us back to the “dark ages” of only a few years ago when budget cuts resulted in significant program reductions. This measure passing is critical to capitalizing on all the benefits of the exciting things our district is doing for kids.
Additionally, in November 2014, voters generously passed Measure O which has been a huge opportunity for Downey Unified. We have begun the process of updating our schools for the 21st Century. In 2002, when the voters passed Measure D for $67 million, through the state bond program at that time, we were able to complete over $130 million in projects at our schools. Proposition 51 would further allow us to gain access to millions in supplemental funding, complementing Measure O, to upgrade our schools over the next 10 years.
If Proposition 51 is passed, state matching funds would continue to benefit our students by providing them with facilities that continue to advance teaching and learning.
I want to strongly urge everyone to vote on November 8th and when doing so, vote in support of both Proposition 51 and Proposition 55. I, along with my fellow Board of Education members, will be voting “yes” for the good of our students because our kids deserve the best!
D. Mark Morris
President, Downey Unified Board of Education