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Next Steps to Safe and Modern Schools: Frequently Asked Questions

How are San Rafael City Schools doing?
SRCS schools have adapted to changing and challenging circumstances over the past two years in order to continue providing high-quality education to local students. Our success is rooted in our dedicated teachers, staff and parents’ commitment to nurturing children socially, emotionally and academically. We strive to provide every student with a strong education that prepares them for the future and we are committed to ensuring that each student has an equal opportunity for success. Our outstanding schools continue to improve the quality of life in our community and protect the property value of our homes.

Have improvements been made to SRCS schools in recent years? 
Yes – in 2015, local voters approved Measures A & B to upgrade and modernize our local schools. We have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from the community for these Phase I improvements, which have included: 

  • New classrooms and multi-purpose rooms at elementary and secondary schools
  • Complete transformation of the campuses at Laurel Dell Elementary School and Madrone High School
  • New student commons, library, counseling center and gymnasium at Terra Linda High School 
  • New student commons, counseling center and STEAM buildings at San Rafael High School 
  • Safety and security upgrades at some campuses, including new fire alarms, locks and PA systems
  • Infrastructure upgrades at some campuses, including new HVAC systems, roofs, electrical and technology 

More information about the San Rafael City Schools Bond Program can be found at

Is further work needed to repair, upgrade and modernize local schools?
Yes. While much of Phase I has already been completed, there is still more work to be done. In fact, the district’s 2014 Facilities Master Plan identified more than $450 million in facility needs. Measures A & B provided the necessary funding for the most urgent priority upgrades, but additional needs remain. As such, students at some schools are still learning in old and outdated classrooms and facilities and SRCS is committed to ensuring that each student has an equal opportunity for success in equitable school facilities. 

How would the District fund these needed upgrades?
The District is currently exploring funding options to complete Phase II repairs and upgrades, including a pair of potential bond measures. Funding from bond measures would be locally controlled and entirely dedicated to SRCS schools, ensuring that all students have equal access to equitable and enriching facilities in modernized schools. 

Would these repairs support the community at large?
Yes, SRCS’ facilities benefit the whole community and are available for public use. Residents and local organizations regularly use our schools, athletic facilities, and performance spaces for community events.

What sort of basic repairs are included in Phase II?
Phase II would help finish basic repairs to keep schools safe, fully functioning and accessible. These include updates to outdated electrical, ventilation and fire safety systems and improvements to lighting and school security systems. 

Will Phase II fund new construction as well?
Yes, Phase II of SRCS’ bond program can help fund new, modernized classroom buildings and athletic facilities.

Does Phase II also include classroom modernizations and updates to meet current learning standards?
Yes, in addition to basic health and safety repairs, Phase II would fund updates to classrooms, labs and instructional technology. These updates are aimed at preparing students to compete at top colleges and for careers in today’s competitive global economy, in fields like computer science, medicine, biotech and media. 

How will the educational changes of the last two years affect Phase II?
All Phase II improvements will build upon the lessons we learned from the COVID-19 pandemic — like the importance of improved ventilation systems and outdoor learning spaces — that place an emphasis on student, teacher and staff safety. 

What priority repairs and improvements could these bond measures support? 

  • Update classrooms, science labs and technology to meet current educational standards 
  • Replace aging portables with permanent classrooms
  • Improve career and job training classrooms to meet current educational standards 
  • Update health, safety and wellness classrooms and facilities 
  • Repair or replace outdated heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems where needed 
  • Provide space for counseling, social and emotional support and a student wellness center 

Do bond measures include fiscal accountability provisions and taxpayer protections? 
Yes, there are many legally required accountability measures built into bonds. If approved, the bond measures would be subject to the following requirements: 

  • All funds would be spent on San Rafael City Schools facilities and schools and could not be taken by the State 
  • Detailed project lists would ensure all funds are spent as promised 
  • Independent audits and a Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee would be required 
  • No funds could be used for administrators’ salaries or benefits 

What is the Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee? 
The Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee (CBOC) was established to provide a high level of accountability and transparency in the implementation of the San Rafael City Schools Bond Program. The committee conducts independent reviews of the expenditure of bond funds for the construction, repair and modernization of schools in SRCS. The findings are shared with the SRCS Board of Education and the public to ensure the bond funds are used as voters intended and that projects are completed wisely and efficiently. The CBOC is comprised of voluntary representatives of the SRCS community. 

The SRCS Bond Program has received a clean audit annually since the committee’s inception and reports have been provided annually to the SRCS Board of Education.  

Why are there two measures, and what is the difference between them?
San Rafael City Schools comprises San Rafael City Elementary School District, which serves elementary and middle school students in the City of San Rafael and the surrounding neighborhoods, and San Rafael High School District, which serves the students who graduated from San Rafael Elementary School District and Miller Creek Elementary School District. 

Although these districts are governed jointly, they have differing boundaries, so a separate measure must be placed on the ballot for each one. This means that the proceeds from one bond measure will benefit elementary and middle schools, and the proceeds from the second bond measure will benefit high schools. Residents of San Rafael City Elementary School District will vote on both measures, while residents of the Miller Creek Elementary School District will only vote on the high school district measure.

How much would these measures cost?
While no decision has been made at this time, the cost of each bond measure would be limited to no more than 3¢ per $100 in assessed (not market) property value for as long as these bonds are outstanding.  

Didn’t the District recently place Measures G & H on the ballot?
Yes – In May 2021, local voters renewed Measures G & H, two longstanding parcel taxes, that provide locally controlled funding our schools have relied upon since 1989. Measures G & H funding is critical for teacher retention and maintaining small class sizes and supporting academic programs in our schools. In order to finish the basic repairs to keep schools safe and functioning and provide modern learning environments, a bond measure – which can only fund capital improvements – is needed. 

I don’t have children attending San Rafael City Schools, how would these potential bond measures impact me and my family? 
Our community has a need for safeguarding the safety, functionality and accessibility of our local schools. These potential measures would help repair our schools and help continue our commitment to ensuring that each student has an equal opportunity for success, now and in the future. Good schools are a reflection of strong and thriving communities that benefit all local residents and protect property values. Plus, SRCS facilities are available for public use. 

What communities or neighborhoods will these potential bond measures impact? 
San Rafael Elementary School District serves elementary and middle school students in the City of San Rafael and the surrounding neighborhoods. San Rafael High School District serves the students who graduated from San Rafael Elementary School District and Miller Creek Elementary School District. The proceeds from these potential bond measures would be used to improve and update all schools and facilities in San Rafael City Schools.

How can I get more information? 
If you would like more information or have additional questions, please contact the superintendent’s office at (415) 492-3233 or