Florence residents to vote on a $196 million school referendum

Pee Dee

School board members with Florence One Schools approved a $198 million referendum to be placed on the ballot on February 26. 

The referendum has been placed on the ballot to add security, new schools and an overall better learning experience for children all throughout the district. 

“First it would have four new schools. All three high schools will receive a renovation. Those renovations are about getting out of the mobile classrooms,” said superintendent Richard O’Malley. 

In addition to adding four new schools, the main focus is security improvements and new athletic facilities. 

Florence group, ‘Student First’, said they have toured the schools around the district and are concerned that several buildings are not adequate for students to be learning in. 

“I go pick up my son after school and he’s standing in the rain because we don’t have the right improvements for basic things,” said Robert Lemaster, financial advisor at Edward Jones. 

A senior from West Florence High School has seen this first hand and wants to see change, not just for her class but for future generations. 

“The major things are bathrooms, because they’re outside. Especially this week with the freezing temperatures, the water has frozen in the bathrooms. We should be able to go to a school in a place we’re proud to go to and we want people to see that,” said senior at West Florence High School, Ryan Eoder. 

If this referendum passes on February 26, homeowners would see a tax increase.

“Approximately, a $100,000 home would be about $134 and then it goes on from there based upon the asset value of your home,” said O’Malley. 

If you would like to know more about the $198 million school referendum, click here. 

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