Editor: On Election Day, Arlingtonians have a chance to invest in the future of all Arlington children by voting YES on the 2022 Arlington school bond.
The 2022 school bond will finance infrastructure improvements that support the health, safety and educational needs of Arlington Public Schools students.
This bond makes improvements to 13 schools across the county, including Barcroft, Campbell, Randolph, Hoffman-Boston, Long Branch, Taylor, Kenmore, Jefferson, Swanson, Williamsburg, Washington-Liberty, Langston, and the Arlington Career Center. And it jump-starts a 10-year APS capital-improvement plan to make additional future upgrades across the school system.
Under this bond, school kitchens will be improved to serve more fresh meals to our youngest students, air-quality updates will be funded, and security vestibules will be fast-tracked to enhance safety for students and staff.
Additionally, APS will invest in the Arlington Career Center site to provide all high-schoolers an opportunity to take cutting-edge classes to fill future jobs in the ever-changing technological landscape. Currently, more than 800 students from Wakefield, Washington-Liberty, Yorktown and H-B Woodlawn attend classes there each week. It will also provide an appropriate home for full-time Arlington Tech students who come from across the county for high-school career and technical education (CTE) courses.
The CTE courses at the Arlington Career Center are especially important to me, as my son (who attended Washington-Liberty) took TV-production classes and my daughter (also W-L) attended automotive-technology classes there. My senior son and his classmates were able to use their news-production skills to place in a national competition. My daughter’s three years of hands-on Arlington Career Center classes were noted as one of the reasons she received a generous scholarship to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she just earned her master’s degree in industrial engineering.
I personally believe this bond will allow Arlington to successfully complete a 25-year thoughtful plan to renovate and modernize our high schools. All Arlington students deserve an opportunity to turn theoretical knowledge into practical experience and develop real-life skills in the process, receive accreditations providing a post-secondary path directly to employment in skilled industries, and earn actual college credits through dual-enrollment classes before they graduate high school. This bond invests in infrastructure that will keep that door open for future Arlington high-school students.
For these reasons, I encourage the Arlington community to vote YES on the Arlington Public Schools 2022 bond referendum.
Antony Maderal, Arlington
Maderal is co-chair of the committee supporting the schools bond on the Nov. 8 ballot.