**This story has been updated to say the district has a 7.8-mill operating bond levy.
“Thinking about these kinds of reductions and how devastating it would be to our community, our students, our staff and our school is concerning,” shared Brand.
Brand says if the school district’s 7.8-mill operating bond levy passes, it will help cover both future operations and a new $58 million pre-K thru 5th-grade building.
“There is the new building and the safety features it will have and the cost reduction by being able to lower our footprint from four buildings to one,” said Brand.
However, if it doesn’t pass, Brand says the district has decided they must make millions of dollars worth of cuts to educational programs to balance their budget.
“It includes pay to participate. We’d have to eliminate all-day kindergarten, as well as staffing and course offerings would have to be reduced,” Brand said.
The $2.5 million budget cut would hit North Olmsted City Schools sports pretty hard in particular, according to Athletic Director Brett Koch.
This includes a $750 pay-to-play fee for high school athletes and a $500 fee for middle school athletes.
“We have a lot of kids that are multiple sport athletes for us. That’s huge. We encourage them to be as involved as they can be and you just don’t know what impact that will ultimately have on them as a multi-sport athlete,” said Koch.
Also, freshman-level sports at the high school will be cut altogether.
“Our kids that are fringe athletes, that come because they want to make it a part of their high school experience. Maybe that’s something they can’t do now,” said Koch.
Issue 8 will come at a cost.
“Per $100,000, it would be $22.75, which for a median home in North Olmsted, it would be about $38 per month,” said Brand.
But Brand believes the price is beyond worth it to keep the school experience for children up to the right standard.
“This is the best plan for the community. I really believe this is a win-win for everybody,” said Brand.