In the past three years, voters in Guilford County have approved a total of $2 billion for new school construction and old school repair, and Guilford County Schools is indeed starting to spend that money.

County taxpayers will be paying off that debt for a couple of decades to come. That won’t be fun. However, one good thing is that – thanks to a joint project of the county and the school system – everyone will be able to track how that money is being spent.

The soon-to-be-online service “School Bond Dashboard” contains a wealth of information regarding school spending on construction and other major projects and it breaks down that information by school.  That way, students, parents, teachers and interested taxpayers can see how much money has been spent on a project, how much is budgeted for it, and what completion date is anticipated.

The dashboard provides a whole lot of other information as well.

While the dashboard isn’t up and running yet, county and school officials at a Monday, Oct. 23 joint meeting of the Board of Commissioners and Board of Education got a preview of the internet tool and were told it will be in service very soon.

While it’s still being tweaked, county and school staff were instructed to put the dashboard online and then make changes to it periodically.  They noted that suggestions from actual users could make the tool better.

At the meeting, several county commissioners offered suggestions as to how to improve the dashboard – such as making it easier to view the estimated completion date of a project and including an introductory paragraph on the landing page that offers a description of the tool and its purpose.