BOND ISSUE | Frequently asked questions
Below are answers to frequently asked questions about the September 10 bond, the Central Lee Community School District’s facilities needs and the solution the school board has presented in the form of a bond issue. Download a PDF version.
What are the needs of the Central Lee Community School District?
Although the Central Lee Community School District is known throughout our region for the exceptional academic and extracurricular opportunities provided to students, the district has a number of pressing facilities needs throughout its schools—and especially at the high school.
Specifically, we must continue to enhance security to ensure students and staff have access to safe and positive learning environments. We also must update our facilities to provide more relevant instruction that prepares students for the ever-evolving jobs and opportunities of the future. This means providing more flexible spaces that allow for project-based learning and collaboration.
In addition, the district has a need to update some areas to be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations, as well as to expand fine arts, events and performance spaces.
If voters approve the bond, how would the funds be used?
If passed, the bond issue would provide the district with $12.9 million in additional funds, to be used for the following:
- A new office at the main entrance of Central Lee High School that would improve security and allow staff to better monitor visitors entering and exiting the building.
- New classrooms for band and vocal programs
- New preschool classrooms, freeing up two additional classrooms to meet space needs at the elementary level
- A new competition and performance gym for elementary, middle and high school events
- New ADA-accessible locker rooms
- An expanded commons area for better student collaboration and improved building flow
We invite you to download this document with project renderings.
What would be the tax impact of the bond?
The board has presented a bond question that would not increase local property taxes. If passed, the tax rate in the Central Lee Community School District would be $12.19 per $1,000 of assessed property value.
How did the board come to its decision to place a bond question on the ballot?
The Central Lee School Board decided to place the bond question on the September 10 ballot after an exhaustive process that included thoroughly examining the district’s current facilities, reviewing the most pressing needs and prioritizing those needs. This process involved community input and feedback over the past year.
The board believes the time has come to address these needs now to ensure students continue to receive the high-quality educational experience for which Central Lee has become known.
How would the proposed projects improve safety and security?
As a school district, our number one priority is the safety and security of students, staff, families and visitors. A key component of the proposed projects includes ensuring a safe, positive and healthy educational environment for every child under our care.
The district would incorporate a new office at the main entrance of Central Lee High School that would improve security and allow staff to better monitor visitors entering and exiting the building. This would add to measures already taken to enhance safety through the addition of secured front doors and a school resource officer.
How would the bond support 21st century learning?
District leadership and board members believe we must continue to prepare students for the jobs and opportunities of the future. This means offering facilities conducive to 21st century learning, with safe, secure and flexible spaces and technology that empower students to learn in a variety of ways.
To that end, the proposed project would support an expanded commons area for better student collaboration and improved building flow. The project would provide new ADA-accessible locker rooms, new classrooms for band, vocal and fine arts and a new competition and performance gym for elementary, middle and high school events.
Additionally, an approved bond would provide preschool classrooms, freeing up two additional classrooms to meet space needs at the elementary level.
We are also proud of the opportunities we provide students who aim to enter the skilled trades after graduation. Several projects proposed through this bond would update facilities that prepare students for these opportunities.
Would money from the bond go toward raises for administrators and staff?
No, the district would not provide raises to administrators, teachers or support staff through the bond. Using bond-generated funds for these purposes is not allowed under Iowa law.
The bond would address needs primarily at the high school. What about the elementary and middle schools?
While the current proposed projects would focus primarily on the high school, there are several components—including preschool classrooms and a new gym—that would benefit students across grade levels. These include additional parking and improved traffic flow throughout the campus.
The board also continues to explore ways to address needs at the elementary and middle school levels. In examining needs throughout the district, the board determined that those at the high school were the most pressing at this time.
Future elementary and middle school projects would likely be funded through the district's bonding capacity and SAVE, a statewide allocation meant only for school infrastructure projects.
Will the community get to vote on this?
Yes! The bond question will appear on a special election ballot Tuesday, September 10, 2019. This is a special school election date as authorized by the Iowa Secretary of State.
Will there be satellite voting opportunities before election day?
Yes! While all registered voters who live within the Central Lee Community School District may vote at their usual polling location on September 10, there will also be in-person absentee satellite voting opportunities prior to the official election date.
These opportunities will take place on the following days and locations:
- Saturday, August 17: Montrose Watermelon Festival, 2 to 6 p.m. at the Montrose Fire & Rescue Station (408 Main Street)
- Thursday, August 22: 3 to 9 p.m. at the Central Lee K-8 Building (2642 Highway 218, Donnellson)
- Saturday, August 31: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Pilot Grove Savings Bank Community Room (506 N. Main St., Donnellson)
All registered voters may vote at the above satellite voting days and locations as an alternative to voting on September 10. Voters must mark their ballot at the satellite location. They cannot take the ballot home with them. Satellite stations will also be accessible to individuals with disabilities.
What is the exact question that will appear on the ballot?
Shall the Board of Directors of the Central Lee Community School District, in Lee County, State of Iowa, be authorized to contract indebtedness and issue general obligation bonds in an amount not exceeding $12,900,000 for the purposes of furnishing, equipping, constructing, improving, repairing, and renovating school buildings and improving the sites therefor at the school district's existing school buildings, including: (a) the expansion of the high school building to include a new competition/performance gymnasium addition with new locker rooms, (b) an addition of a new commons area in the high school building to resolve space and functional needs, (c) new office space and entryway areas in the K-8 and high school buildings to improve security, (d) renovations of the K-8 building for a new early childhood center and (e) parking and site improvements for the school district campus to improve access and safety?
Do you have additional questions? Please contact Dr. Andy Crozier, Superintendent, at 319-835-9510 or firstname.lastname@example.org.