The Carmel Clay School District is one of the first in the state to send a referendum for school safety funding to the November ballot. The law allowing districts to fund school safety measures with voter-approved tax dollars was passed during the last legislative session.
The Carmel Clay referendum aims to bring in an estimated $5 million a year for three years. The money would fund school resource officers, teacher and staff training and mental health services for students.
Superintendent Michael Beresford says Carmel needs these additional layers of safety.
“If we have students who are struggling and are in need of support now, we need to act now, to get them the help they need,” he says.
Carmel resident Jennifer Goodspeed gave the only public comment at the school board meeting and says she is disappointed state lawmakers didn’t give districts more funding for school safety.
“If it’s that important of an issue, then it should be funded at the state level,” Goodspeed says. “As opposed to local districts having to go to their citizens, their tax payers, and say ‘Are you willing to pay more?'”
Carmel residents voted on two school funding referenda in the last decade. Both of them passed.