611 E. Agate Road Shelton, WA 98584
360.426.9115 Fax 360.426-1036
Dear Pioneer School District Resident:
The Pioneer School District works to ensure learning and achievement for all students. We teach students from preschool through 8th grade, but we don’t have a high school. When students reach 9th grade, they must attend school in a neighboring district. Most of Pioneer’s high school–age students attend Shelton High School.
Shelton School District charges Pioneer School District an annual “non-high fee.” Our district pays about $700,000 every year for approximately 350 students to attend Shelton and North Mason High Schools. We use funds from our local levy to pay this annual fee.
On February 14, 2017, voters in the Shelton School District approved a $64.8 million construction bond. They plan to make $29.5 million of improvements to the high school. Our district’s students who attend Shelton High School will benefit from these improvements. State law requires that we pay part of the costs. These projected costs are more than our district can afford with our current budget.
We need your help to decide what to do:
- OPTION 1 – Pay for improvements at Shelton High School. Shelton School District estimates that we will owe them about $4.5 million. If we choose option 1, Pioneer School District must run a new capital construction levy or construction bond.
- OPTION 2 – Annex into Shelton School District. Shelton School District would absorb Pioneer School District and we would no longer exist. Pioneer School District residents pay a combined tax rate (bond/levy) of $3.34 per $1000 of property value. Shelton School District residents pay a combined tax rate (existing bond/levy/new bond) of $8.11 per $1000 of property value. If we choose option 2, Pioneer residents would see their taxes increase to nearly $6 per $1000 of property value.
- OPTION 3 – Build a high school. Working independently or with another non-high district, we would create our own high school using maximum allowance State matching dollars. If we choose option 3, Pioneer residents would need to pass a construction bond and then could build a school that reflects our own community.
During the next few months, the Pioneer School District Board of Directors will offer several opportunities to provide feedback. We will keep you informed as more details become available. In the meantime, if you have questions or would like to visit the school, please contact Mr. Brewer at 360-426-9115, ext. 3, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Martin A. Brewer Superintendent
Jason Bailey Director
Dr. Dale McDaniel Chair
Ginny Beech Director
Pamela Harrell Vice Chair
Mike Felton Director