Members of the Guilford County Board of Education and the Guilford County Board of Commissioners have scheduled a meeting this week that could be pivotal in determining the future of the school system’s facilities.

The official purpose of the meeting is “to discuss the Guilford County Schools Master Facility Plan and funding strategies.” In plain English, the meeting is being held to help figure out how many hundreds of millions or billions of dollars the system needs for school facilities and where the heck the money can be obtained.

The meeting, which is technically a meeting of subcommittees of both boards, will be held on Thursday, Dec. 19 at 9 a.m. in the third-floor conference room of the county-owned BB&T building in downtown Greensboro right next to the Old Guilford County Court House.

A recent study funded jointly by Guilford County and the schools found that the school system had about $1.5 billion in facilities needs for repair, construction and other projects.

While many consider a massive bond referendum as the right way to raise the money, Guilford County Commissioner Alan Branson said this week that there are other options. He said he’s interested in exploring the possibility of increasing the county’s sales tax in order to raise the money.