District 748 Reminds Residents To Vote Next Week

District 748 Reminds Residents To Vote Next Week Click to Enlarge Photo: Sartell School District

(KNSI) - The Sartell-St. Stephen School Board is asking voters to get out and vote next week for an operating levy to run the new high school.

Board Vice-Chair Jeremy Snoberger says the big reason they need the vote is to provide the high-quality education that they've provided in the past.

"The district has always had a pride point to have small class sizes and to have the best opportunity for our students. To do that we have to have the operating revenue to go along with the beautiful new building that we do have"

The district is asking voters to approve a $1.77 million operating levy for ten years to operate 300,000-square feet of new space at the high school.

It would cost $74 for every $100,000 of home value, or about $6 a month.

The district failed to pass the same levy last year, and it resulted in the board cutting $1.3 million and deficit spending $500,000.

Board Chair Jason Neis says if the levy fails again, everything will be on the table.

"We will have to as a board go back and look at budget reductions again, that's never an easy process. One of our biggest expenses is staff, and that will be one of the areas that we will have to look at reductions, and that in turn leads to larger class sizes."

The board would also discuss changing the district's open enrollment policy, but Neis says he doesn't think the current board would approve any change.

Right now, District 748 is closed to open enrollment.

In May of 2016, district voters approved building a new high school and other improvements.

The school board says they had to ask voters for a building at that time for it to be able to open in the fall of 2019.

State law bars schools from asking for an operating levy anytime other than November.

The board says they decided to wait until they needed the operating money rather than collecting it before there was a building to operate.

For more details on the levy, click here.