By Terry Groover
Voters in the Yukon school district could soon be asked to approve a $43 million bond issue that would be used, in part, to build a new school.
Superintendent Jason Simeroth said the proposed bond issue would fund projects during a four-year effort, including the new school.
The district has seen an approximate 2 to 3 percent student growth during the past several years, said Justin McDaniel, executive director for the district.
Estimates are that Yukon will have almost 10,000 students in the near future. The district serves about 68 square miles.
While no decision has been made about what type of school would be constructed, McDaniel said it likely would be a facility to house fourth- through sixth-grade students.
Yukon currently houses its sixth-graders at the middle school, while there are two centers for fourth- and fifth-grade students.
Simeroth told members of the school board the project would include work at all of the district’s schools over the four-year period.
“We will look at what’s needed and will create a priority list,” the superintendent said.
Most of the projects are not what Simeroth labeled as “sexy,” but are essential for the success of the district.
Most involve projects that normally would be funded through the district’s general budget. However, by utilizing bond funds, the general fund monies can be spent elsewhere.
He also told the board that bond funds cannot be used to pay teacher salaries.
The goal is to have the new building completed and in operation by fall 2021.
“This will help our district,” Simeroth said.
Board President Suzanne Cannon said the district, despite state budget cuts, has students who need to be served.
“These items in the bond issue are real, and they won’t raise anyone’s taxes,” she said.
Cannon added that Yukon residents know the district only looks for essential items to be funded.
“We don’t ask for funding that isn’t needed,” Cannon said.
Meanwhile, the board approved agreement with MA+ Architectures for projects involving the construction of new classrooms at Surrey Hills Elementary School and the addition of portable buildings at the Yukon Alternative Learning Experience site.
The contract for the alternative learning site was for $65,000, while the contract at Surrey Hills was $237,000. The projects could be completed by the start of the fall semester, McDaniel said.
“We are bringing in more buildings to serve more students,” Simeroth said.
Also Monday, the board:
- Congratulated Jason Brunk, the assistant superintendent/central office administrator of the year for the region.
- Named Deidre Bradley to be the new principal for Shedeck Elementary School. She had been the assistant principal at Independent Elementary School. The current principal is retiring.
- Approved on a 2-1 vote, a waiver that allows the district to have fewer certified librarians than required by the state Department of Education.
- Honored the Yukon High School band for its participation in a competition in St. Louis.
- Honored members of the high school’s financial literacy team for winning a state championship and advancing to the national competition this week.
- Learned that the high school journalism class had received national honors for both its newspaper staff and yearbook staff.