Rye Brook, N.Y. (March 28, 2017) —- Port Chester residents approved the Port Chester-Rye Union Free School District’s $79.9 million capital bond project. The polling place closed at 9:00 p.m., and the unofficial vote count tonight is 1,307 to 1,278. This includes absentee ballots, which were required to be delivered to the district by 5:00 p.m. today.
“Tonight is a wonderful victory for the students – current and future – of the Port Chester school district,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Edward Kliszus. “Thank you to every Port Chester community member who used their vote to show their support. Thank you to the people who helped get this capital bond project approved – our PTA families, an invaluable group of grassroots campaigners, key members of the business community, elected officials and members of the media. Of course, I cannot say enough about our district’s administrators and teachers who see the needs we face every day, and who worked every day to help parents and community acquaintances understand those needs leading up to this historic vote.”
“I am thrilled at the turnout and outcome of tonight’s vote, and the prevailing progressive attitude of our Port Chester neighbors that it signifies,” said Board of Education President Jim Dreves. “After our last bond was voted down, we knew the challenges we would face in getting this even more expansive project passed. It has been a carefully conceived, deliberate plan to identify our district’s urgent needs and share that immediacy with the public. Tonight’s approval shows that the community listened, understood, and cares about the futures of the students in our district.”
Of the $79,950,000 capital bond project, 66% of allowable expenses are eligible for New York state reimbursement. The 24-year average annual cost to Port Chester taxpayers will be an estimated $75 per $100,000 of property assessment.
The passage of the capital bond project will bring additions, upgrades and renovations that will solve Port Chester’s district-wide problem of classrooms functioning at or near capacity. It will create smaller class sizes to improve teacher-to-student ratio and allow for the type of tailored instruction that contributes to better academic achievement, test scores and graduation rates. The capital bond project will also allow for added services to students with disabilities, and provide them full access to the mainstream curriculum.
The capital bond project includes facility upgrades for athletics and the arts, including a new high school gymnasium that will bring competition space up to State High School Association standards. At the secondary level, it provides more space for elective and honors classes, which better prepare students for college and employment after graduation. Collectively, the district-wide enhancements of the capital bond project will deliver the best possible educational opportunities to students at every level, raise the academic profile of the district and positively impact the entire community.
About the Port Chester Public School District
The Port Chester School District provides programs and services that reflect our quest for scholastic excellence combined with respect and concern for the worth and development of individual students. The District’s motto — “Success for Every Student” — has been internalized by every educator and everyone is focused on practices that enhance student learning and make school compelling.