Trustees agree to gather voter opinions using in-house resources

The Kuna School District wants to find out why voters rejected a recent bond proposal but they aren’t willing to spend $25,000 – $50,000 to hire a polling consultant.

The district asked voters in March to approve a $111.4 bond to build new schools and expand existing facilities to meet the needs of increasing enrollment. However, that measure was rejected by voters.

Superintendent Wendy Johnson presented board trustees Tuesday evening with a cost-savings plan utilizing in-house resources to gather voter opinions. Trustees voted to support the new initiative.

“We did have the majority who supported the bond election, but not the supermajority that we needed,” Johnson said. “And we didn’t have the turnout we expected, so what we want to do is understand why and what do we do about it?”

Approximately 56.34% supported the bond in March. To pass, they needed a supermajority of 66.7%. Only 2,719 people voted, according to the school district.

Johnson said the voting data will help them succeed in the next election. “We would review that feedback with you and make a recommendation of how we proceed forward in September,” she said.

The following list compiles parts of the plan discussed during the meeting:

  • Produce a short survey for families
  • Use Facebook advertising
  • Create pop-up focus groups at community events
  • Convey information through utility bills
  • Talk with parents who are waiting in line the first week of school

“The first couple days of school moms and dads bring their kiddos to school and they’re in line to drop off and pick up. We can ask them some of these questions,” Johnson said.

“Our substitutes are always looking for things to do at the beginning of the year, so we could pay them to help us talk to parents,” she said. “That might be a way for them to earn money and for us to get the information.”

To see a sample of the draft survey questions, use this link.

Darren Svan

Darren Svan

Reporter Darren Svan has a background in both journalism and education. Prior to working for military schools at overseas installations, he was news editor at several publications in Wyoming and Colorado. You can send news tips to [email protected].

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