News Release

Worthington school board calls for February referendum

New proposal would alleviate overcrowding in schools

Oct. 17, 2017 – The Worthington School Board approved a resolution Tuesday, Oct. 17 to place one referendum question on a Feb. 13, 2018 ballot. The $68.5 million referendum would address overcrowding in schools by building a new high school.

“This proposal is different than what was proposed in 2016,” said Lori Dudley, school board chair. “We engaged with community members through a public opinion survey, focus groups and public meetings. Our community helped us choose this plan because it was the most cost-effective option to meet the needs of our students.”

The request is for $10 million less than the 2016 proposal, and athletic fields and other expenses were eliminated. The same reconfiguration of schools would take place, with grades Pre-K-2 (and Community Education) at Prairie Elementary School, grades 3-5 at the current middle school, and 6-8 at the current high school. West Learning Center would close.

“It is important to understand that although the referendum seeks approval of a new high school facility, the real need is additional space at all grade levels within our District,” said Dudley. “Through focus groups, public meetings and architectural analysis, we learned that construction of a new high school along with shifting grade levels within our existing buildings is the most efficient and cost effective way to solve our space needs.”

Building a new school offers several other direct benefits to students, staff, and the surrounding community:

  • Provides adequate instructional and program space at all grade levels
  • Reorganizes current grade configurations to better align with curricular goals across the district
  • Creates flexible spaces for personalized learning and a wider variety of instructional delivery
  • Strengthens commitment to district’s strategic plan and mission and a greater ability for community use and partnership with district facilities and programs

Worthington Schools will be making a concerted effort to provide information to the community by sending direct mail to residents, making presentations to community groups, and communicating through the district website, email, and social media. For more information, please contact Superintendent John Landgaard at 507-372-2172 or john.landgaard@isd518.net.