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Guest column: Warrenton school bond is for our children

Our community has consistently valued public education and equal opportunities for all students

Published on August 29, 2018 9:25AM

Last changed on August 29, 2018 9:42AM

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian
Students at Warrenton High School work on graphic design projects.

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian Students at Warrenton High School work on graphic design projects.

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Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian
Rebecca Sprengeler works in the fish hatchery facility at Warrenton High School, which is creating a career pathway around natural resources.

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian Rebecca Sprengeler works in the fish hatchery facility at Warrenton High School, which is creating a career pathway around natural resources.

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Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian
Jeanne Moha, far right, with the SMART program helps students at Warrenton Elementary School pick out books to read.

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian Jeanne Moha, far right, with the SMART program helps students at Warrenton Elementary School pick out books to read.

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Debbie Morrow

Debbie Morrow


This fall the Warrenton School Board is asking voters to support our kids and to vote yes on our 2018 school bond. This bond will make important progress toward school safety and security, help reduce overcrowding, modernize our aging schools, and expand career and technical learning opportunities.

I am a mom who cheers on our winning Warriors – from baseball to band. I work in the real estate industry and know the important role that investing in our schools means to the future of our region and our property values.

Also, I have the honor of serving as an elected member of the board of directors for the Warrenton-Hammond School District. I see every day how hard our teachers and staff are working to support the education of our children.

As a district, our focus has always been on creating pathways to engineer success in our students. Our goal is to graduate students with a 21st-century education. To that end, we have been successful at maintaining smaller class sizes, a higher number of school days and robust program offerings, while increasing student enrollment and graduation rates, high school completion rates, and college enrollment rates.

This focus has allowed us to have teachers and support professionals who continue to invest in their own professional development — they truly are our best asset. Our continued investment in technology ensures we have the capacity for quick and easy access to online resources on both campuses.

More than a year ago, our school district convened an in-depth facilities planning committee. What started out as a community conversation around school overcrowding evolved into very strategic planning sessions around the future of education for Warrenton children and our community. Ultimately this led us to identifying the need for a first-phase bond to address our critical safety needs, including building outside the tsunami inundation zone.

The diversity of the committee allowed for many different perspectives, from civic leaders to elected officials to teachers to grandparents to parents to the school board and administrators — all with an equal voice at the table.

With the upcoming retirement of our 2002 bond, this fall Warrenton voters have an opportunity to continue supporting our children’s education.

As a school board, we support this measure as parents of public school children, but just as strongly as working professionals, community members and citizens.

The $38.5 million bond is expected to raise property taxes by $2.03 per $1,000 of assessed value. The overall property tax burden in the school district is projected to be $2.68 per $1,000 of assessed value through 2049 if the bond passes.

Our Warrenton community has consistently demonstrated that it values public education and equal opportunities for all students. The children of Warrenton need school buildings not only to be safe and seismically sound but they must provide space for dynamic and engaged learning.

This bond represents long-term thinking and planning, not just for our students and to provide them with the best possible education, but for how we will manage our school buildings and collective school resources.

This bond is for our children and our community and we truly want to hear from you. Visit Warrenton-HammondSchoolBond.Org to share your thoughts.

Debbie Morrow is administrator of the Clatsop Multiple Listing Service, executive officer of the Clatsop Association of Realtors and chair of the Warrenton-Hammond School Board. She and her husband, Chris, have lived in Clatsop County for 20 years.







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