First-grade teacher Su Rogers (left) helps Tyler Mercado find Rwanda in an atalas last month at Kyrene de los Cerritos Elementary School.

On Tuesday, May 15 the Kyrene School District will ask voters to vote "yes" to reauthorize its Maintenance and Operations and K-3 overrides. This is a reauthorization of the overrides currently in place; not a tax increase. As recently reported by the Arizona Auditor General, Kyrene is one of the most efficient districts in the state with administrative costs among the lowest and dollars in the classroom among the highest of the 229 school districts in Arizona. Loss of M&O override funds would ultimately necessitate cutting $8 million from the district's annual budget. These cuts would directly and dramatically affect our children in their classrooms. The K-3 override funds (approximately $4 million a year) are predominantly used to reduce class sizes in the primary grades, but also provide some K-3 instructional programs. Lower class sizes help maintain and enhance the quality of the education provided for our children in Kyrene schools. Primary math coaches who work with teachers and students are also funded by the K-3 override. These coaches help to insure that children have a strong foundation in math, which is increasingly important in today's world. The Kyrene community has always been supportive of our schools and people continue to be attracted our neighborhoods because of Kyrene schools. Please vote "yes" to reauthorize the overrides that support our local schools and will allow Kyrene to continue to be a district of excelling schools. --Patricia Benster is a 14-year resident of Ahwatukee Foothills and an academic enrichment advisor for Kyrene de los Ninos Elementary School.

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