Mansfield's Board of Education heard from the levy committee on Tuesday evening at the Springmill Learning Center. The chairpersons representing the levy committee were Jill Haring, Beth Keefer, and Johnny Givand. All of them have been involved or affected by Mansfield City Schools in some way, and they have all decided to devote their efforts to getting the levy passed this year.
“I want to do this for our children,” said Johnny Givand. Givand grew up in Mansfield and graduated from Mansfield City Schools. He has been involved in many facets of the school district in the past. Now that he is retired, he has assumed a role that will allow him to have an effect on the youth's future.
Jill Haring stated, “Finances are an important piece of education.” If passed, this year's levy will restore the status of last year's levy.
According to the Ohio Department of Education (ODE), Mansfield City Schools would likely adopt the status of “fiscal emergency.” Last year's status was “fiscal watch.”
If the levy does not pass, the district is “likely to experience external oversight, which supersedes our authority in the schools,” said Haring.
When asked why they thought the school levy has been difficult to pass in the past, Beth Keefer said, “I think some just don't see the value of having a good education system. We need to build the wealth of the area, and when businesses look to schools, they will look at Mansfield City Schools.”
According to Superintendent Brian Garverick, the levy would not generate any new money. The levy would continue the levy passed in 2007 which generates $4 million annually for operating expenses and would last five years.
The levy will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot.
To spread the word, Haring announced that the levy committee, along with some volunteers, will be at the Mansfield vs. West Holmes homecoming football game on Oct. 11 under a tent passing out pumpkin lattes and information on the levy.
For more information on the upcoming levy, visit Mansfield City Schools' website.