The benefits from the proposed referendum could have a lasting, positive impact on the students of Charlotte County. The money should be spent on essential items that are directly linked to student achievement, such as increased instructional time, additional materials, and more personnel. With a stronger budget, Charlotte County will attract better teachers and provide more essential services to children.

At the same time, we cannot become a cookie cutter school district. We must not just copy Sarasota and Lee counties. The School Board should show the people where it plans to spend this extra money and explain exactly how each item will benefit the residents of Charlotte County.

We must make a thoughtful, long-term investment in our kids. We should consider this referendum as an investment in our children’s, and county’s, future.

“An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest” -Benjamin Franklin