By: Suzie Glassman/NewsBreak Denver
(Castle Rock, CO) DougCo voters rejected the district’s proposal for a $450 million bond (ballot initiative 5B) to build new neighborhood schools, expand several middle schools, shore up critical maintenance needs, and enhance security by a margin of 8%.
The district’s other proposal (5A) remains too close to call. However, some organizations say the measure will unlikely pass, despite a months-long push to educate DougCo voters on the district’s need to raise teacher and staff compensation to be more competitive.
While Invest in DCSD’s co-chair Christa Gilstrap maintains a sliver of hope that 5A can overcome a margin of around 2,000 votes in the coming days, she also expressed heartbreak for the district’s teachers, saying they will try again next year.
DougCo teacher’s union, Douglas County Federation (DCF) interim President Sarah Mesmer said in a statement, “Losing a funding initiative is disappointing, a bit more so this year as nationally, Colorado ranks 50th in competitive teacher pay, and Douglas County’s teachers and staff face further pay disparities with our neighboring districts.“
The DougCo school district has yet to release an official statement on the outcome. However, another media outlet reported that during the Invest in DCSD watch party, Superintendent Erin Kane said the results were not what she was hoping for but was optimistic about the support shown by voters.