ST. CLOUD -- A local day care center is fighting to keep the building they've been using from being developed.

Little Saint's Academy has leased the former Wilson Elementary School since 2011. The building is owned by District 742, and they have started discussions about selling the property.

A neighborhood meeting was held this (Tuesday) evening about the possible sale, which had residents in an uproar.

Dr. James Nicholson lives next door to the school and says it's a vital part of the community and they stand behind them.

"We all look at land values, we look at powerful people and say we don't have any power but we really do, and I think it's important that we express ourselves in a way that lets others know we are concerned with their decision making," says Nicholson.

School Boar Chair Dennis Whipple was at the meeting. He says the board started receiving bids back in April, with the biggest player being a St. Paul-base developer, CommonBond Communities, for $600,000.

Over 100 residents of the Northside-Hester Park Neighborhood spoke on how important keeping the school was to the community, and how the district was making a mistake.

Katie Mathews has a daughter in Little Saint's and says the school offers so much more than just a day care.

"They are an exceptional school, it's not just a day care it's a school and a learning center for the future of our child," says Mathews.

Whipple says as of this afternoon CommonBond Communities has pulled their offer, leaving Little Saint's Academy with the only offer on the table.

He says he will take the concerns back to the finance committee for further discussion at their November 12 meeting.

From there, the committee will decide if further review is needed or if the school board should accept an offer on the site.

(Photo: Alex Svejkovsky, WJON)