Monday, December 4, 2023

Borrowed Funds for School Renovations Won’t Raise Taxes for Oxford Residents

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor

Oxford’s youngest students will attend pre-K and at the newly named Oxford Early Childhood Center in the fall.

The “new” center is actually the old Oxford Elementary School; however, the school is set to undergo major renovations to convert it to an early childhood center.

The Oxford School District Board of Trustees approved the renaming of the building to the Oxford Early Childhood Center during its February meeting.

In January, the Oxford School Board of Trustees voted to approve the realignment of elementary grades and which schools students will attend starting in August.

Along with the move of pre-K classes, other changes include:

  • Kindergarten and first grade will be at Bramlett.
  • Second and third graders will be at Della Davidson.
  • Fourth and fifth graders will be at Central Elementary
  • Sixth graders will be at Oxford Intermediate.

To help get the pre-K center ready and renovations to the other schools and playgrounds, the district needs money – about $10 million worth.

To obtain that, the Board voted in February to improve issuing a resolution of intent to issue bonds up to $10 million “making repairs, alterations and additions to school buildings of the District, for the purpose of erecting school buildings and other buildings used for school purposes, purchasing heating plants, air conditioning, fixtures and equipment for such buildings, purchasing land for school purposes, purchasing school buses and transportation equipment, improving and equipping such lands for school recreational and athletic purposes, refinancing outstanding debt and paying the costs of such borrowing.”

The District will not receive the borrowed funds until the project is bid out and a contractor selected.

Good news for taxpayers — OSD Chief Financial Officer Allison Wally said it will not increase taxes.

“The district paid off an old bond in December of 2021,” she said, “and this note would replace the mills used to pay that note in years past.”