Fort Madison school bond referendum fails - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Fort Madison school bond referendum fails

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FORT MADISON, Ia. (WGEM) -

A referendum to issue $27 million in bonds to build a new elementary school in Fort Madison has failed.

1517 people voted yes while 1210 people voted no, but according to the Lee County Auditor's Office, the referendum needed 60 percent of the vote to pass.

The auditor's office said there are roughly 10,978 voters in the Fort Madison Community School District and the special election had a roughly 15 percent turnout. Election officials say that kind of voter turnout is strong for a special election.

Voters were asked whether to approve a $27 million bond which would have allowed them to close two aging elementary schools, and move students to a brand new building. 

"Those vibrant learning spaces we were hoping to help increase enagement with our students is not going to be present," Superintendent Erin Slater said. "Our staff will just continue to work hard with kids and try to increase that level of teaching and learning."  

The board of education will recovene with community groups to review how voters responded and what the next step is.

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