Issues to Consider

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Getting a bond issue approved in Wood County schools is not an easy thing.

"The last one that passed was in 1990 and that was to repair roofs," says school Superintendent Bill Niday. "The last two have been defeated."

School officials hope getting $15 million from the West Virginia School Building Authority will entice voters to approve the issue. Still, it's not an easy sell; with an economy that's perceived to be shaky, the schools won't get the $15 million without passage of the $35 million issue.

"Our goal is to educate everybody in Wood County about what this issue will do for the students," Niday says. "We hope every citizen in Wood County will be able to make an informed decision about this bond issue on November 2nd."

The money is for renovations to all three public high schools, including heating, air conditioning and fire safety improvements as well as the replacement of school lockers.

"Think how much easier it will be for teachers to provide education and educational experiences for kids," says Dr. Clacy Williams, the SBA's executive director. "if they have updated English, foreign language and science labs."

If you think Parkersburg South High, the most recently-built of the three schools, needs the least of the improvements, think again. Niday says even it needs to be put under roof as much as possible to make it more secure.

While the election isn't until November, absentee ballots are going out right now to some voters, and early voting begins in Wood County later this month.