After two years of planning and preparation, the largest bond measure in the district’s history has passed with a higher percentage of “yes” votes than any other bond!

This was possible only because we all worked together on behalf of the children in our district.

I want to say, “Thank you.”

  • Thank you to everyone who participated in a design symposium, attended an open house or presentation or provided feedback on the plan or the condition of facilities.
  • Thank you to those who volunteered on behalf of the bond measure or shared information with their friends, family and neighbors.
  • Thank you to everyone who developed concept designs.
  • Thank you to the community for continuing your longstanding commitment to this district.
  • Thank you to everyone who supports our students’ success.
  • Thank you to everyone who voted.

Over the next six years, you’ll see a lot of changes around the district as every single school and other facilities are rebuilt or renovated.

With the resources we’ve been given, we can transform our students’ trajectories by providing equitable learning environments for all students. We’ll create opportunities for innovative programs and partnerships and have more room to involve parents and the community. Adaptable spaces will help us better serve students’ individual learning needs and bring school communities closer. Every school will benefit. And as a result, so will the people inside of them.

The bond always has been about more than just roofs, walls and doors. It’s about creating the right conditions for teaching and learning. Truman Elementary fifth-grader Simmi Sen explains why improving physical spaces affects how students learn:

“It just feels like you’re in a better environment. You feel like you’re in a better place, and you feel like the teachers are better and everyone else is. You just feel more sophisticated.”

Fellow Truman student Payton Pearson added:

“It will help the schools grow and be stronger, and it will help a lot of other schools as well.”

Fifth-graders Cheyenne Arehart and Nakiana Ortiz Ponce agreed:

“It will improve learning areas for kids in the future. There would be more room for PE, art, music and all the other things that will help kids have more fun in the future.”

“It’s important to our whole community in Vancouver.”

Levi Hongel is enthusiastic:

“I would be excited, because a lot of schools I’m probably going to go to would get upgraded, and Truman is my elementary school, and so I would be every excited.”

And the students’ hopes are just as great. Here’s Simmi again:

“It will just make our world a better place and Washington and Vancouver a better place.”

I’m excited, too. Public education is vital to good communities, and Vancouver is among the very best. I feel blessed to be part of a community that values its schools and reaffirms its commitment in so many ways.

We’ll work hard to ensure that we honor our end of the commitment and provide students, families and community members with good places to learn, grow, meet and thrive.

Thank you for believing in Vancouver Public Schools.

Take care,

Image: Steve's signature