Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions About the District’s Proposed Tax Levy Increase
Q: If approved, how much would the tax levy increase?
A: The tax levy would increase by .55 cents for every $100 of assessed property.
Here is a chart showing the amount at various appraised values.
Q: How did the district determine this amount?
A: We analyzed what it would cost to implement each part of our Strategic Plan. If approved, this tax levy increase would provide approximately $2.4 million per year.
Q: Why is the tax levy increase needed?
A: The district worked with the community to create a Strategic Plan. That plan aims to make the Reeds Spring School District world-class. There are several areas in our district where we have to make improvements for our children. The strategic plan targets those areas and has an intentional focus on improving student learning. To achieve that goal, we must implement the seven strategies laid out in the Strategic Plan. Also, the pandemic led the district to implement virtual learning for students. This program will likely continue even after the pandemic ends, and there are costs associated with virtual learning.
Q: How does the district’s tax levy rate compare to nearby districts?
A: It is the lowest in the area. See this chart:
Q: How do the district’s salaries compare to nearby districts that we compete with for employees? We consider our competition to be the following school districts: Nixa, Branson, Republic, Ozark, and Willard.
A: We rank at the bottom of the list in beginning and ending teacher salaries. While we award employees who seek a Master’s degree, we rank last in compensating our teachers who are experienced. The longer a teacher is at Reeds Spring, the wider the gap is in their pay in comparison to our competitors.
Q: When is the election?
A: Tuesday, April 6.
Q: When is the voter registration deadline?
A: March 10
Q: What happens if the tax levy increase does not pass?
A: We will try again next year. The bottom line is that we need more money to implement our Strategic Plan.
Q: How do we know our tax money will be spent on the Strategic Plan?
A: Since Dr. Hirschi arrived at Reeds Spring Schools, he’s been transparent about expenses and issues that the district faces. He will provide an annual update to the Board of Education, Strategic Planning Committee, and the community outlining how district funds have been used.
Q: Didn’t the school district receive money from the federal government due to COVID-19?
A: Yes. The district received a little over $1 million. That was a one-time payment that covered the district for about a month.
Q: If I don’t have children or grandchildren that attend Reeds Spring Schools, why should I support this?
A: These students are the future of Stone county and will be our future leaders. It is beneficial for everyone in the community if our students receive the best education possible. Great schools have a direct positive impact on property values.
Q: How much does the district spend per student on their education?
A: There are many variables that can cause a spike or a decline in what a school district spends per student each year. For example, if a district completes a major capital improvement project, it might show an increase in what was spent for that particular year. Last year we reported to the Department of Education that we spent $11,200 per student for their education.