Wausa’s Superintendent Brad Hoesing and the school board have been working toward the school’s recent renovation proposal for two years now. Next week on September 11, the public will vote on the potential changes.
Renovations would add more room for high school classrooms and a new 5,500 square-foot industrial arts building. Plans for the proposed project also include demolishing the old 1913 Wausa school building and replacing it with a new single story building.
Total costs of the project are expected to be $4.35 million, which includes a $3 million dollar bond.
The school board members and Hoesing said they are disappointed that saving the original 1913 building is not realistic. Hoesing said the maintenance and utility costs have started to add up and maintaining the old building has become just as expensive as building a new one would be in the long run.
Hoesing said is job is to give info to the public to better educate them on the issue, he has even uploaded a powerpoint on the matter to YouTube.
In the video, Hoesing spoke as he went through slides, some include photos. He went over the proposed plans as well as what state the buildings are in and what needs to be fixed.
The YouTube video is available by searching Wausa School Bond:Building Project Informational Meeting.
Hoesing said he is unsure how the public plans on voting next week but is confident the board and himself have done their best at getting all the necessary information out there.
“We have been working on this for two years, now it’s in their hands,” he said.
If the public doesn’t pass the school's proposal, there would be issues that remain to be fixed.
“We would need to regroup and start the process over,” Hoesing said. Finding the right solution would involve more community meetings and small group discussions until the next idea was proposed.
If the public decides to go through with the bond, the first step would be for the school to amend their budget to include the bond. The board members would have to sit down and solidify some construction plans.
An architect has already been selected so the design process would begin and all the details would be decided upon.
Hoesing said this particular architect company will bring the educators, the administration and the board members together to plan a design. They plan to ask what they need, how they would like it and build a plan together.
“Every school district is different and has different needs,” Hoesing said. Each office or room will be designed to fit the need.
For those registered voters living in the Wausa School District who want to vote on the matter, a dropbox will be set up at Commercial State Bank during September 11 and will be closed at 2 p.m. Cast your vote by 2 p.m. or go to the Knox County Courthouse to vote by 5 p.m.
Unofficial results will be posted sometime that evening after 5 p.m.