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New Glarus voters approve $28.9 million referendum for building improvements

The majority of the money will go towards building a new elementary school for 4K through 2nd grade students.
Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 11:18 PM CDT
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NEW GLARUS, Wis. (WMTV) - New Glarus voters approved Tuesday a nearly $29 million ballot referendum, allowing the school district to make several changes to school buildings. The measure passed 72-41, with about 64 percent of voters choosing to approve the referendum.

The $28.9 million ballot referendum allocates money for renovations at both the elementary and high school as well as an addition to several high school classrooms, focusing on the Tech education, Ag and engineering areas.

Almost 90 percent of the money will go to building a new elementary school. The new building will house 4K through 2nd grade students. New Glarus Superintendent Jennifer Thayer and other district staff said because of rising enrollment, their biggest need is more space.

Thayer also explained the current elementary school is not designed for young kids because it is in the former high school building.

In March, Thayer said, “They have to go far away to get to bathrooms, they’re back and around a corner, there aren’t enough of them, they have to go get materials, it’s just not set up in a really good way for collaboration or to give good play space for those youngest learners.”

With the referendum approved, New Glarus families will not see a tax increase. Thayer said the district has paid off enough debt that they are able to fund the new projects without raising taxes.

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