MINONK – Administrators in Fieldcrest School District No. 6 will have to go back to the drawing board after voters on Tuesday sank a referendum that would have paid for a pair of new school buildings.
“The school board did not have a plan B,” said Superintendent Dr. Dan Oakley said Wednesday. “That’s a process we’re going to have to start working on.”
The referendum pitched asked to issue $29 million in bonds to pay for new middle and high schools, as well demolishing part of the middle school in Wenona and the high school. Construction would have brought the district up to code for health/life safety rules. According to Oakley, the two current buildings were constructed 80 to 90 years ago.
Solutions may include renovations in the existing buildings, but Oakley noted he will not know what path the district will take until the discussions restart at the next school board meeting scheduled for Nov. 28.
“We’re all in kind of a wait-and-see holding pattern,” he said.
He added the election results were disappointing and the cost of the new bonds and its effect on tax dollars likely played a role in the results, though he saw no active opposition to the measure.
“Voters have had their opportunity to speak and obviously this is not what they wanted,” he said.
The district includes parts of four counties: Marshall voters opposed the question 776-309. Those in Woodford said no, 638-237 along with LaSalle (210 to 106) and Livingston (11 to eight).
The high school and middle school have a combined enrollment of nearly 640 students.