Wake Ed

Wake Superintendent Jim Merrill credits “transparency” for passage of school bond issue

Wake County Superintendent Jim Merrill is attributing “transparency and openness” with helping persuade voters to approve the $810 million school construction bond issue in October.

Merrill talks about the bond campaign in an article in the January edition of District Administration magazine that looks at how school districts can win bond issues. Wake is cited in the article as a success story.

According to the article, Merrill attributes the bond passage to support from local leaders and to the district’s “transparency and openness throughout the planning stages, establishing priorities, and communicating value to our community.”

Merrill also cites the Friends of Wake County as an important reason for the recent win. The group spent more than $300,000 to persuade the public to back the bonds.

The article also cites what happened in Wake as an anatomy of a successful communications plan. Merrill says the district’s communications staff developed a robust campaign to help pass the bonds.

As examples, the article cites the information on the bonds that was posted on the district’s website, the presentations made by district staff to community groups, the marketing material left around the county and interviews staff gave to the media.