MEDFORD, Ore. -- Measure 15-175 on the May ballot, if passed, will increase property taxes by $0.12 for every $1,000.00 of assessed property value, which means for a home worth $265,000.00 you would pay an additional $32 per year.
The measure proposes to build additional facilities at North Medford High School and South Medford High School to house Career Technical Education (CTE) programs.
The facilities would house programs including, but not limited to: Plumbing; Electrical; Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC), and Carpentry.
"There’s a gamut of career technical education." said Karen Starchvick, the chair of the Medford School Board, "There’s a business career technical education and we have a robust business CTE program. There are culinary arts at both schools. North Medford has child development, that’s career technical education. There are some career tech at both locations. It tends to go more towards the pre-professional pathway as opposed to the vocational pathway. We have a wonderful cabinetry program at North Medford high school, its award-winning, it’s a four year four course sequence of progressively harder work constructing furniture."
Trade programs allow for hands-on learning, "This kind of programming is great for kids who are kinesthetic learner's, they learn by doing and we really don't have a lot of program options for kids like that." said Starchvick, "It's also great for kids who are living in poverty circumstances who don't see the relevance to their high school education, this is the path forward for them these are high wage right here in the valley that are in field right now.'
46% of students do not enroll in at two or four year college within two years of graduation, said Starchvick, "We have got to show them that there are options out there that don’t involve a costly for year or two year degree."
Starchvick said that while the expansion would directly impact students, it would also have an impact on the community. " The district is willing to let community partners use these facilities for adult education. These are jobs that are unfilled in our valley. I’ve talked to people in our construction industry at length and I’ve been told that the lack of sub-contractors directly affects the price of housing in the valley."
You can find a detailed summary of the bond on www.medfordschoolbond.com or by visiting the Medford School District website.