Canyon Independent School District officials said a series of community meetings have proven beneficial as a means of sharing information regarding a nearly $200 million bond proposal.

CISD is asking voters to approve $196.7 million to accommodate growth facing the district while also addressing the need for facility upgrades, noting in 2010 the school district’s student enrollment was 8,781 students, with 2017′s number at 9,985. Projected enrollment in 2020-21 is estimated to be 10,766 and 12,052 in 2024-25. The projected eight-year growth rate is 2.7 percent per year. Officials said the average age of the district’s facilities is 24 years.

In consideration of the bond election, officials said a long-range planning committee was formed, comprised of 63 citizens from across the community and school district staff, logging 600 hours of study during six meetings over nine months. They presented recommendations to the Board of Trustees in June – which included scheduling community gatherings in September and October to discuss the finer points of the bond proposal.

“All of the presentations have been welcomed and folks have been appreciative of us sharing the components and other information,” Darryl Flusche, Canyon ISD Superintendent of Schools, said. “We want our community to know taking ownership in the process is important. The school district belongs to the community and that input is essential to our growth and development.”

If approved CISD officials said the plan would include two new elementary schools and a new high school - noting there are currently four portable buildings being used at Westover Park Junior High, in addition to six portable buildings at Randall High School. Other slated projects include renovations at Sundown Elementary School, Canyon Intermediate School, Canyon Junior High School, the Canyon High School Baseball and Softball Field House and Kimbrough Stadium. Districtwide technology connectivity and bandwith would be improved and five new activity buses would be purchased.

Potential maximum financial impact of the bond proposal passing, officials said, translates to taxpayers paying upwards of $17 additional in property taxes each year on average – adding the average home value in CISD is $161,194.

Canyon resident Doug Cowan said he is in favor of the bond proposal because it bodes well for the community’s future.

“We have to stay ahead of the curve,” Cowan said while waiting for his meal at a local restaurant on Friday. “The bond proposal will vastly upgrade the places where our children learn from the dedicated men and women who have devoted themselves to passing the baton of leadership and guidance. We owe it to our children to give them our best. And that is what this bond proposal does. I like the way the school district has put in the work to get the word out to the voters.”

Meanwhile, Emily Daniel, also of Canyon, said she hasn’t decided how she’ll cast her vote on the bond proposal, but said reaching out to the community is a worthwhile effort.

“I still have time to weigh all of the options, so I don’t know if I’ll vote yay or nay, but it’s good for the school district to go out into the community and explain how they came up with the plan and how it would work,” Daniel said while loading grocery purchases into her vehicle on Friday. “There’s a lot to process, but they have done a good job of letting voters know what their intentions are.”