Patrick Henry adding levy to consolidate school buildings - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Patrick Henry adding levy to consolidate school buildings

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HAMLER, OH (Toledo News Now) -

A northwest Ohio school district recently announced it's putting a levy on the May ballot to help consolidate its school buildings.

Currently, the Patrick Henry School District operates out of four buildings -- and two of them are more than 80 years old. The district is hoping to renovate and expand their high school and middle school buildings into a K-12 campus.

The 1.9 mill levy will replace a 30-year-old 1 mill permanent improvement levy. The .9 increase will cost homeowners, on average, $36 a year.

The money raised would help build additions to the current high school and middle school buildings to move pre-K through fourth-grade classes out of their old buildings and into modern classrooms.

"It's just going to make us operate much more efficiently, even in the instructional sense," said Thomas Taylor, superintendent of Patrick Henry Local Schools.
    
A dip in enrollment is also a factor in the consolidation plan. Last year was the first time Patrick Henry dipped below 1,000 enrolled students.

"There's no reason to be using buildings that you aren't filling up, when we could build on and have much more modern, energy-efficient buildings that we are filling up," explained Taylor.

Having the entire school district on one campus has become a trend among outlying school districts. The expansion could save the district up to $350,000 a year in operating costs. Those savings could be put right back into the district's permanent improvement fund.

"It just enhances the overall learning experience," said Taylor.

A public meeting on the expansion plans will be held April 15 at the Patrick Henry High School library.

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