SARTELL - The Sartell-St. Stephen school board wants to bond $105.8 million over 25 years for a new high school, and for updates to buildings across the district.

A special election vote will be held on May 24th. The district has discussed a possible new high school for months in order to alleviate space crunches in the district due to growing enrollment.

If the referendum passes, a new Sartell High School would go on a piece of land next to Oak Ridge (on the north side). The district already owns 80 acres of land in the area. Superintendent Jeff Schwiebert announced on Monday that the district discussed and came to a preliminary agreement to buy 20 additional acres of land adjacent to Oak Ridge Elementary. The land would be sold for $520,000. The district will enter into a purchase agreement contingent on a passage of the bond.

"We think it's a great decision because it keeps us with just having to purchase that small parcel and being able to focus our bonding money for educational purposes instead of land," school board chair Krista Durrwachter says.

Schwiebert previously said they need 100 acres for a new high school. The proposed building is 270,000 square feet and would hold 1,350 students.

It would cost the owner of a $200,000 home an estimated $359.87 in annual tax impact if the referendum passes.

Under the plan, the current high school would turn into a middle school building. The middle school would become an intermediate school for 3rd-5th graders. The two elementary schools would become Pre K-2nd grade. The district would move Pre K classes out of the district services center.

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