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St. Joseph voters reject $107 million school bond

The St. Joseph School District had proposed a combination of new construction and renovation to transform the district into a two high school system.

Posted: Apr 6, 2021 8:56 PM
Updated: Apr 7, 2021 12:29 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Voters in St. Joseph overwhelmingly defeated a $107 million bond issue on Tuesday.

Unofficial results Tuesday night show 8,330 voted against the proposal compared to the 4,573 that voted for it.

The bond needed 57 percent of the vote to pass.

The St. Joseph School District had proposed a combination of new construction and renovation to transform the district into a two high school system.

Following the release of the election results, the SJSD administration released the following statement: 

"We are very proud of the work the district staff and the Board of Education has invested in the process of identifying the needs of our schools and how we can keep the St. Joseph School District moving forward," Superintendent Doug Van Zyl said. "The outcome of this election will not stop us from continuing to work hard every day for our students and our community. While we are obviously disappointed in the results of the election, we will not stop putting forth the effort it takes to do what is best for kids. We will refocus our efforts as we look to solving the district’s short- and long-term educational needs.”

The $107 million plan had included purchasing the American Family building for the new high school, upgrading Central High School, and converting Benton and Lafayette high schools into middle schools.

The St. Joseph School Board also released a statement Tuesday night. It reads, "The voters have spoken, and we respect that. What is clear is that the status quo is not sustainable. While we are disappointed this bond initiative was not successful, it is the beginning of a discussion with the community that our facilities are not up to 21st century educational standards. Something must change. We look forward to continuing the conversation with the community and finding a solution that works for our students, staff, and the taxpayers.”

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Temperatures have dropped down below freezing for many this morning with mostly clear skies creating a few areas of frost. Today temperatures will struggle to warm up again into the upper 40s and lower 50s with a mix of sun and clouds. Tonight temperatures will drop into the upper 20s and lower 30s again providing another frosty morning on Thursday. Southerly winds will return on Thursday helping to slowly warm temperatures back up into the upper 50s. Most of the day Thursday will be dry but rain chances will start to increase after about 6 PM. Rain chances will continue for the first half of the day Friday before moving out of our area. The weekend looks comfortable and spring like with temperatures in the 60s and 70s under mostly sunny skies. The warm up continues into next week with highs in the 70s and 80s on Monday.
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