Overview of Bond
In 2022 Broken Arrow Public Schools surpassed the 20,000 student mark for the first time in history. Based on the projections in two separate demographic studies, the district is growing at the highest predicted rate, gaining approximately 500 students per year. With several thousand new construction starts already in the works across the district, more classroom space is needed. This bond issue will give voters the chance to add classrooms at key elementary sites to keep class sizes manageable.
The last two bond issues – 2009 and 2015 – enabled the district to build 13 new buildings, expand or renovate 37 facilities and replace portable classrooms with permanent structures. Two projects, the natatorium and another elementary school, both listed on the 12-year 2015 bond proposal, have yet to begin construction, because the money for those projects is not available until 2025. These two projects will be constructed as planned, unless the voters choose differently in Propositions 3 and 4 of the 2023 bond.
The 2023 bond issue includes a $5 million investment in safety precautions across the district. This includes a fence and secure vestibules at the high school, LED lighting in parking lots, a dispatch center and body cameras for the BAPS Campus Security team, as well as additional building cameras and hand-held radios for staff. These safety enhancements would be included in the first two years of the five-year bond, meaning the money would be available for expenditure just months after the bond election.
- Fiscal Impact
Should the 2023 bond issue be approved by the voters, there will be NO TAX INCREASE for Broken Arrow citizens, and the district’s millage rate will remain comparable to surrounding districts. Since 2009 the district has gained nearly 4,000 students, an enrollment growth of 24%, yet the inflation rate in the US between 2009 and today is 42%. In other words, the purchasing power of $100 in 2009 requires $142 today. The previous two bonds brought new facilities to the district, and the 2023 bond is needed to perform the upkeep necessary to maintain those facilities.
The community can be proud of the district’s track record of success in its hundred plus year history. More than 1,400 students graduate each year, and the district maintains a graduation rate of 94%, with last year’s class earning more than $10 million in scholarships. Innovative new programs like Project Path Pathways and the Vanguard Academy allow BA to lead the way when it comes to academics, and creative endeavors like the Tiny Tigers Learning Center create a work culture that attracts and retains the best. The passage of the 2023 bond will enable BAPS to stay on the trajectory of success.
Oklahoma school bond issues require a 60% approval by the voters, so now more than ever, every vote counts. Voters ARE able to vote with absentee ballot or early and in-person ahead of the election, and a list of polling places can also be found at: