ST. CLOUD - The St. Cloud area school board has made it clear, they're planning to keep two high schools in the district. The board voted 6-0 last (Thursday) night to move forward with a plan to replace the current Tech high school.

School Board Chair Jerry VonKorff says "basically last night's decision will guide the planning as it goes forward. And, it tells the administration and the public that we are not interested in consolidating the two high schools".

VonKorff says the debate of one versus two schools was taking the focus off the bigger issues.

The school board will now start working on picking a location, and figure out how much it will cost to build a new school.

The voters will have the final decision. VonKorff says they're on track to put a bond referendum on a ballot sometime this spring. It would need to be approved by a majority of voters in order for a new school to move forward.

Tech Alumni Association President Jim Dahl says thousands of graduates across the country are concerned about the fate of the school.

The district wants to replace the aging Tech high school, due to rising repair costs.  The final decision will be in the hands of the residents.

Nearly 10,000 students are enrolled in the St. Cloud area district.

Crowd waiting to speak on Tech High School. (Dan DeBaun, WJON News)