Letter to the Editor: Invest in schools to build strong communities

The Lakewood Sentinel featured this letter to the editor by Jeffco parent Elizabeth Parker.

Lakewood is a fantastic place to raise a family. We are close to the Metro Area, and it’s a quick jump onto I70 to get to the mountains.

When we bought our house in Lakewood after moving from Upstate New York, the neighborhood schools weighed heavily into our decision. Jefferson County Schools have a great reputation, and many of the neighborhood schools are doing amazing, newsworthy things with very little.

Initially, we didn’t worry about our investment in our home. Now? Lakewood NEEDS 5A and 5B to pass so that each and every homeowner can retain the equity they’ve built in their property.  

It’s a simple as this: If Jefferson County Schools crumble, so will our property values.

Investing in our neighborhood schools is imperative to building a strong community. People move to live near schools that will ensure their children receive a quality education.

If we want to retain equity and increase our property values, we must protect our school district and guarantee that it will continue to be competitive long into the future. We want families and educators to choose to live and work in JeffCO. If our best teachers leave for better salaries in Denver, Cherry Creek, and Boulder, families will follow. 

That is why I am voting yes on 5A and 5B. 
Voting yes on the mill and the bond will improve our schools with increased security, expanded STEM and career programming, renovations and repairs, and reduce fees, which - in the long term - will increase equity in our homes. Our children deserve this. And our schools, which are the soul of our community,  deserve this. This is the heart of the issue; however, from a practical standpoint, Lakewood residents have an vested interest in protecting their property values. I urge you to consider these thoughts when making a decision on whether you support these crucial ballot issues. Vote YES on 5A and 5B. 
Elizabeth Parker
Thank you for your support! Don't forget to vote YES on 5A and 5B and drop off your ballot by Nov. 6!