Sunflower County residents are just days away from being afforded the opportunity to have their voices heard as it relates to the Sunflower County Consolidated School District’s proposed options for new facilities.
Brown & Associates has been contracted by the SCCSD to “Facilitate an unbiased community-based survey,” according to company President Adrian Brown.
The first step in the long process is getting the community’s voice, which he and his team plan to do through a series of community presentations and surveys beginning Sept. 18 and continuing through Oct. 30.
His team’s responsibilities also include conducting facility assessments on each of the buildings the county owns and presenting their findings. Plus they are to include a cost analysis for new construction and renovating and possible funding sources.
Brown said that before the district gets into discussions or planning regarding facility improvements through construction or floating bonds they want to know what the community will support.
He and his team will set up sites across the 60-mile long county where citizens will be able to view a short 3-5 minute video and answer a brief questionnaire. The sessions are tentatively set for Mondays at 6 p.m.
The first will be at First United Baptist Church on Sept. 18. The Enterprise-Tocsin will publish the dates to follow.
They will be able to accommodate some groups and churches whose members are unable to make the Monday meetings with online surveys. The surveys will also record zip codes so the findings will show which responses came from which areas.
Brown said they will use the most recent county election numbers as the base for the survey. He calls the project a major undertaking considering Sunflower is the state’s longest county.
Brown cautions that neither he nor his team has any information on what the districts plans are and he was instructed to refer any such questions to district officials.
“The only thing that the district wants to know, and want us to investigate is what is the community’s voice as it relates to school facilities in Sunflower County,” he said.
The county’s two high schools are over 60 years old and are considered by many to be outdated.
Brown has until Dec. 15 to complete the required assignments. Brown said he hopes the people will take the surveys seriously because he feels as if the district is in a position to seriously consider what the community is saying.