It’s not getting as much publicity as the Beatle’s Magical Mystery Tour did back in the ’60s, but a tour of county schools led by Chairman of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners Skip Alston has been generating a lot of publicity for the $1.7 billion school bond referendum on the ballot next month.

In a way, the tours arranged by Alston are depressing because they highlight how many problems school buildings have, and, recently, the tours have been focused on schools that are slated for destruction.

On Wednesday, April 27 at 3 p.m., Alston and another commissioner or two will tour Southern Guilford High School at 5700 Drake Road in Greensboro – another school that’s “slated for rebuild” using the bond money on the ballot.

In addition to the tour, the commissioners will meet with Southern Guilford High School Principal Brian Muller to discuss the plans for the new school and the needs for that facility.

On the tours, the commissioners and school officials, with members of the media in tow, usually also push for Guilford County voters to pass the quarter-cent sales tax increase that will be on the ballot as well.

Though they aren’t saying so publicly, many county leaders don’t see much of a chance that the voters will pass the sales tax increase – which county voters have shot down in a big way several times before.

However, there is a good deal of optimism that the voters will back the massive school bond.

Some argue that the schools would have been better off going for a smaller bond because voters are less likely to approve a huge amount of money and because the schools have never been able to spend school construction and repair dollars as fast as they think they can.