Q: What happens if the referendum is approved?
A: If the referendum is approved, Special Education, STEM, and Arts programs will be funded; class sizes and existing programs will remain stable; and funds will be available for educator and staff salary and wage increases.
Q: What happens if the referendum is not approved?
A: Significant cuts will be made to maintain a balanced budget. Cuts could include more than 100 staff positions as well as reductions in programs and services.
Q: How do our school taxes compare to our neighbors?
A: The MCCSC school tax rate is the 8th lowest in Indiana. Even if the referendum is approved, the MCCSC tax rate will remain among the lowest in the state.
Q: How do schools impact the community?
A: In addition to increased property values, studies have outlined the community benefits of public education. For example*,
- Improved education and more stable employment greatly increase tax revenues.
- The annual cost of a quality public education is about $11,000. The annual cost of incarcerating an individual is about $32,000. (41% of prisoners have not completed high school versus 18% of the general adult population.)
- Mortality decreases 7.2 % for men and 6% for women for every additional year of schooling.
- The chance for optimum health is up to eight times higher for people with 18 years of education versus seven.
*The Social and Economic Benefits of Public Education, Dana Mitra PhD, Pennsylvania State University
Q: What do enrollment trends look like in the district?
A: Enrollment was stable until a slight decline during the pandemic, not unlike most school districts in Indiana.
Q: How were the funds from the 2010 and 2016 referendums spent?
A: Funds from the 2010 and 2016 referendums were used to:
- Restore teaching positions
- Give students the opportunity for the individual attention they deserve
- Strengthen programs to assist striving learners
- Restore stipends for extracurricular activities that keep so many students engaged
- Replenish the General Fund operating balance
For more information, click here to download the 2016 referendum update brochure.
Q: How did the Board of School Trustees determine the proposed levy amount?
A: The Board and administration led a community engagement process, including a community opinion survey, a Referendum Advisory Committee made up of community stakeholders, and community meetings to provide information and seek feedback. The levy amount was decided based on school district needs and community feedback.
Q: Are my taxes going up by 35%?
A: The ballot will say that your school tax rate (not your total property tax rate) is increasing by 35%, but the language is confusing, and is required by state law. The law requires us to state an operating levy tax increase as a percentage over the non-referendum tax rate. So while the authorized rate would increase from 14¢ to 18.5¢ per $100 of property value, the ballot calculates the increase from zero. The percent increase appears high because of MCCSC’s extremely low standard tax rate, and because the current approved referendum rate is not included. In the end, the district’s total tax rate will be at or below 72.5¢ - still significantly below the average in Indiana.