Answers to FAQs
- When is the election?
- Proposition S will be on the ballot on Tuesday, April 6, 2021.
- When do I need to register?
- Voters must be registered by March 10, 2021, in order to cast a vote.
- When are the polls open?
- The polls are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- What is required for passage?
- The bond issue requires a four-sevenths super-majority (57.14 percent) to pass.
- Where will the Freshman Center be located?
- The Freshman Center will be constructed on district-owned land west of Ray-Pec East Middle School.
- When will the Freshman Center open?
- If Proposition S is approved by voters on April 6, the Freshman Center could open in fall of 2023 or 2024.
- Currently, some freshmen are enrolled in advanced classes or in classes and activities with upperclassmen (such as band). Will freshmen continue to have those opportunities?
- Ninth graders will be able to access most of their courses at the Freshman Center. As the course schedules are developed, more information will be shared about transportation to the high school for courses or activities.
- How long will this relieve crowding at the high school level?
- Construction of a Freshman Center is projected to relieve overcrowding at the high school.
- Didn't the District talk about a second high school years ago? What happened?
- In April 2005, Ray-Pec voters approved an $18 million bond issue. That no-tax-rate increase bond issue included these projects: Constructing and equipping a new K-4 elementary school (Creekmoor), constructing and equipping a new 5-6 intermediate school (Bridle Ridge), and purchasing land on M-58 near M-192 for future facilities.
- At that time, the District had 5,160 students and was growing rapidly. Growth projections estimated that the district could have 10,250 students by 2014. The District's long-range plan included construction of a middle school (Ray-Pec East) and a high school on the land. A few years later, the economy and growth slowed down. As the District's long-range plan was revised, plans for a second high school were pushed further into the future.
Performing Arts Center
- Where will the Performing Arts Center be located?
- The new performing arts center is planned to be located adjacent to Ray-Pec High School. Although the concept drawing shows the PAC on the west side of the high school, the exact configuration has not been determined.
Career Oriented Education
- What types of programs will be offered?
- The bond proposal includes plans to provide more space for career opportunities for students (such as HVAC, electrical, plumbing, etc.)
- What grade levels may participate?
- Currently, students who are juniors and seniors may participate in career-oriented programs at Cass Career Center, Summit Tech Academy, and Southland CAPS.
- How much did the District pay for the former Orscheln building?
- The District purchased the building for $1.15 million. It recently appraised for $1.7 million. According to estimates from the district's architect, the building was purchased for about one-tenth of the cost of building a new structure at that location.
Maintenance and updates
- What projects are included in the bond proposal?
- Proposition S includes projects at every location, including:
- Replace HVAC rooftop units at Eagle Glen, Peculiar, Raymore, Shull, Creekmoor, Bridle Ridge, South Middle School, Academy, and the High School
- Update playgrounds at Peculiar, Creekmoor, and Raymore elementary schools
- Replace windows and storefront at Timber Creek, Stonegate, Peculiar, Raymore, and Shull
- Renovate or replace roof sections at Eagle Glen, Shull, Stonegate, Timber Creek, South Middle School, Academy, and the High School
- Parking lots renovations at Bridle Ridge, Creekmoor, Shull, Timber Creek, East Middle School, South Middle School, Academy, Panther Stadium, and the Administrative Services Center
Bond Issue Information
- What is a bond election?
- A bond election can best be thought of as asking for a community's permission to finance large building projects or other improvements. If approved by voters, a school district can sell bonds to investors to raise the money for the building projects, and those bonds are paid off over time to the investors through the current tax levy.
- Why does the school district need to issue bonds?
- Think of a bond issue like a home equity link of credit. When a homeowner wants to make a major improvement to a home, but lacks the upfront money, the homeowner may ask for permission from a bank to borrow against the current home to make the improvements. The borrowing is then paid back over time.
- What can bond funds be used for?
- In Missouri, a school district must ask for voter approval for issuing bonds for several purposes, including purchasing sites for school buildings and libraries, construction of new school buildings, and repairs and capital improvements of existing facilities.
- How can this be a no-tax-rate-increase bond election?
- There are two reasons: First, new home and business construction, combined with the fact that home values in the district continue to increase, means that there is a greater tax base to support the school district. The same tax levy is paid by more taxpaying entities. Second, is the tremendous financial management by the Board of Education. The Board recently refinanced and paid off some bond payments from previous elections to save taxpayers thousands of dollars. Together, these actions have created additional bonding capacity so that a new bond election is not projected to increase the current bond issue tax levy.
- Doesn't this just convert short-term debt into long-term debt, resulting in more expense for taxpayers?
- The District has not converted any short-term debt into long-term debt. The no-tax-rate-increase bond election is possible because of the early elimination of existing debt, which has resulting in savings, the refinancing of current debt that saved interest instead of increasing it, and the growth in the district in the form of new homes and businesses. Over the past 10 years along, the District has save taxpayers over $5.8 million by refinancing and/or prepaying bonds. Additionally, the District has actually shortened the term of its outstanding debt by one year. The only extension of debt was issued for the construction projects authorized by a vote of District constituents in 2016.
- What is the difference between a bond and levy election?
- School bond and tax elections in Missouri are held under different circumstances. A bond issue election is asking for voter approval to issue bonds for new construction and capital improvements. Some bond issue elections do have an accompanying tax rate increase. Proposition S does not include an increase to the tax rate. A school district may ask for voter approval to increase its tax levy.
- A group of community residents has formed a committee to provide additional information about the election. Current leadership members of the Citizens4RP Committee are: