Campaign for Measure A begins

The campaign to pass Measure A kicked off on Sunday, and speakers encouraged the community, including Paly students, to campaign for the measure.

Measure A is a $378 million bond which, if passed, will provide the district with funds to renovate buildings and upgrade district technology, according to the campaign’s co-manager, Mandy Lowell.

At Paly, Measure A would fund the building of a new performing arts center, the modification of the library, classroom renovation and computer replacement in five year cycles, according to Lowell.

The bond money may also be used to help expand Paly’s lab classrooms.

“The limiting factor to Paly’s growth is science classes,” Lowell said. “We need more labs.” However, Lowell said there would be “no more encroachment on Paly’s quad” and that the new labs could potentially be added as a second story to the existing science building.

“When we built the science building, we made the foundation deep enough to support the addition of a second story,” Lowell said.

The science building would not be the only building at Paly undergoing significant changes, were the bond to pass. A mezzanine, or shallow second story, could also be added to the library.

When the library was built in the 1950s, the ceiling was made high enough to accommodate a second story, which was never built, Lowell explained. Now, modifications to the library may be necessary.

“The way the library was used in the 60s is not the way it’s used now, but the building hasn’t changed,” Lowell said. “We have gotten as much funding as we can, the only way to make capital improvements is with this bond.”

Another change the bond will make, if passed, is utilizing “green” construction techniques. This would allow less money to be spent on energy and more on other needs, Lowell said.

Escondido Elementary School already uses photovoltaic cells, which save the district about $6,000 a year, according to the district.

State Senator Joe Simitian, who spoke at the kick-off party, stressed the importance of the bond.

“When we talk about equal opportunity for kids, schools make that real,” Simitian said. “It’s a matter of global survival. What goes on in classrooms is of primary importance. If we look to the state capital [for funding] we will be disappointed.”

Simitian also encouraged the community to begin to campaign for the bond’s passage and win community support for the measure.

“This is a campaign none of us should take for granted,” Simitian said.

Lowell is strongly encouraging students get involved in the campaign, whether they are of voting age or not, in order to give back to the district. Students can work at phone banks on May 14, 15 and 19, and will receive community service hours.

Interested students should contact Lowell by email, at [email protected] for more information.

Lowell believes that students taking part in the campaign can help make a positive impact not only on Paly but on the entire district.

“When you see Paly in ten years, you’ll be excited,” Lowell said.