Voters head to the polls today to decide on a $13-million bond for Jenks Public Schools. News on Six anchor Scott Thompson has this education update on where the money would go.
Todayâ€™s bond issue would pay for 23 projects across the Jenks School District. School officials say in times of budget crisis, bond dollars become very important for special programs, like foreign language. It comes down and students can listen up. They're called language labs. And they're helping students get a grasp on foreign language.
9th grader Laurel Dyson: "it really helps with pronunciation you can look at the words and read em but you cant always pick up the pronunciation by just looking at it." 9th grade Spanish teacher Shala Marshall: "I feel it is easier for the kids to learn because it lessens they're anxiety and I think that's one of the biggest inhibitors of acquiring a language." Kids can tune into their lesson for the day, use the headphones to communicate in small groups, and even get some individual attention without the teacher ever leaving her desk. 9th grader Julie Tissue: "cause its like one on one and so instead of the whole class asking questions you can use the teacher call button and call her."
Jenks high school students are already taking advantage of this technology. But now they're trying to bring language labs to Jenks elementary schools. Shala Marshall says the technology could be even more helpful for younger kids. "They're at a ripe age they're brains are just ready for them to acquire languages they listen and hear differences and pronunciation so much easier than students at this age do so its extremely important that we get the labs in the elementary schools as well."
And with state money still running short, school officials say they can only afford the essentials. Making dollars for special programs like foreign language few and far between. Shala Marshall: "because those things cannot come out of our general fund so we rely on the public supporting us and passing bond issues for us to be able to purchase language labs.â€ There are two bond issues on Todayâ€™s ballot totaling $13.75-million.
Berryhill voters will also head to the polls for a school bond. That bond is just over $4.5-million and would pay for school equipment and other improvements.