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Central Lee School District plans for upgrades after bond issue passes

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DONNELLSON, IA – School officials are ready to get started on renovations following a 12.9 billion dollar bond issue approved by voters Tuesday night.

It’s happening in the Central Lee School District, where school officials said it’s long overdue.

“We got some initial numbers and the excitement started to build,” Elementary School Principal Heather Fuger said.

“When it happened, it was just like yes, finally,” Activities Director Jerry Ireland said.

“I thought to myself, we might actually have a gym with air conditioning,” High School Principal Nicole Herdwich said.

The upgrades will start at the high school, where Ireland said a brand new separate gymnasium will be built on campus.

He said the need for more space goes beyond athletics.

“You should see the show choir invitational, about 12 schools is all we can hold and this place is packed,” Ireland said. “Now, with this new gym, we’re going to bring as many as we can.”

School officials said the upgrades will also benefit the students in band and choir, who are crowded.

“Each program will get new storage areas, rehearsal halls, just all brand new rooms,” Vocal Director Tracy Madsen said.

The office will also be getting a face lift.

“This is the office and this won’t exist anymore,” Herdrich said. “This will be commons area, so my kids won’t have to sit on top of each other at lunch.”

There will also be upgrades at the elementary and junior high school.

Elementary school principal Heather Fuger said they plan to fix the overcrowding in the Pre-K rooms, by adding two new rooms and a new and more secure front office.

“This space behind us is the current office, this will become the space for the new childhood center little hawks preschool program,” Fuger said.

It’s upgrades she said wouldn’t be possible without the voters.

“Our community wants to make our school great for years to come,” Fuger said.

School officials said meetings will start as soon as Thursday to start mapping out a timeline and construction plan for these upgrades.

The results show the issue passed 655-335. A similar bond failed last April, even though it carried almost 57 percent of the vote. The issue required a 60% plus one in favor to pass. 66% of voters supported the issue Tuesday.


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Kara Biernat

Kara Biernat is a MultiMedia Journalist for WGEM News.

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