On August 30th, local voters approved a discretionary property tax at a rate of 0.50 mills. This will replace the existing voter approved 0.60 millage that expires June 30, 2017. These funds will be used to retain high quality teachers, purchase technology and support infrastructure, and implement and maintain Career and Technical Programs.
Current 0.6 millage funds have been used to purchase and upgrade numerous technology systems. Hardware upgrades include the district’s main data center, fiber optic network, wireless access points, computers, security cameras, and classroom audio visual equipment. Software purchases and upgrades include the district’s student information system, learning management system, anti-virus protection, security monitoring system, and many other software applications.
Moving forward, new millage funds will be used to continue and support the systems implemented above. The funds will also be used to replace network wiring at schools, upgrade the district’s aging phone system, and address network security related to student safety and confidential information. All of these technology systems and upgrades are needed in order to provide our students and teachers with access to digital curriculum, greater connectivity for online assessments, and up-to-date technology tools that support high quality teaching and learning.
The 0.50 millage will be used to support new and existing Career and Technical Education (formally referred to Vocational Education) programs in the School District of Indian River County. The Career and Technical Education programs provide students with the opportunity to apply the fundamental knowledge they learned in Math, Science, Language Arts and History to real world settings. Students recognize the relevance of the knowledge they have learned, utilize that knowledge to explain processes and apply that knowledge to solve challenges that occur in areas of interest to them. Students have the opportunity to foster professional relationships with the community and through their interest and inquiry extend their own rigorous learning to higher levels of knowledge.
We are developing high quality programs in our high schools that will provide students with the Critical Thinking Skills, Employability Skills, and Technical Skills that future employers are looking for. The goal is to ensure that students from the School District of Indian River County are prepared to become prosperous members of our society as they graduate and enter the workforce.