Letters to the Editor

Support your neighborhood schools in special election | Letter

Ideally, we have homes with the right amount of space for our families and daily functions. But what if more family and friends also want to live in this great area and need to move in with you? A couple extra people you can make room for, but if they keep coming? Pretty soon you have RVs sitting on your lawn and your house looks like the Griswolds in “Vacation” when cousin Eddie comes to stay.

OK, this is not a likely housing scenario, but this is the kind of overcrowding the Lake Washington School District (LWSD) is facing right now, except it is portables instead of RVs choking school grounds. And it does affect us and our homes.

Housing prices are linked to school quality, period. This is true when markets are hot and when they are slow. If you are selling a home within a good school district, you will get more money for that house and it will sell faster. And knowledgeable buyers see these homes as better investments whether they have kids or not.

The basic truth is that the Washington state Legislature does not fund the school districts to the degree necessary to keep up the quality of our schools. So school districts often must turn to levy and bond measures to fund school construction, technology enhancements, ongoing maintenance, teachers’ salaries and more. In fact, all of the Eastside school districts surrounding LWSD also have levy and bond measures on the upcoming Feb. 11 ballot; we do not want to slip behind.

Since I’m a real estate agent living and working within the district, I have a personal and professional interest in the quality of the LWSD. I feel fortunate that my two kids are getting competitive educations without private school expenses. I see the limitations at the outdated school my youngest attends versus the advancements and space at my older son’s newer school. I see the motivated teaching staff throughout the district as I volunteer in their schools. And I see clients coming to me with “quality of schools” high on their list of house buying requirements. How could I not vote yes for LWSD schools?

I’m not the only agent advocating for the levy and bond vote. The Seattle-King County Association of Realtors (SKCR) confirms this viewpoint in a recent press release: “Schools have a significant impact on home values,” said Sam Pace, a housing specialist with SKCR. “It’s not just families with school age kids that are concerned about the quality of schools when buying a home,” he emphasized, adding, “Savvy buyers know that quality schools will be a factor in the sales price when it’s time to sell.”

When your ballot arrives for the Feb. 11 election, vote yes, yes and yes for the two levies and bond to support your neighborhood schools!

1) Renew the Education Programs and Operations Levy

2) Renew the Technology and Operations Levy

3) Approve the Building Bond

Cara Erdman

Kirkland

 

 

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