ST. PAUL -- The three largest school districts in the St. Cloud Metro are applying for their piece of $12.5-million in grant money from the state to help improve school security.

As part of the bonding bill this year, the state legislature earmarked $25-million for use by districts across Minnesota. The money is divided into $12.5-million for schools in the Twin Cities Metro and $12.5-million for schools in greater Minnesota.

District 742, Sauk Rapids-Rice and Sartell-St. Stephen are all applying for grant money for different projects. Sartell's Superintendent Jeff Schwiebert says they're looking for money for the current high school, what will eventually become a middle school.

"Our current high school will be remodeled into a middle school, and we need to put a secure entrance onto it. So this is a way to stretch our bonding dollars with some state dollars."

The maximum grant awarded will not exceed more than $500,000 per project. Schwiebert says since they originally started working with the original bond money from three years ago, inflation has started to stretch the budget.

"There's been a little inflation since that time. So it would help offset that cost since we're using up our bond proceeds, and it would be very beneficial for us to have those additional dollars so we can do everything we promised our taxpayers we would do."

Over in Sauk Rapids-Rice, Superintendent Aaron Sinclair says they're hoping to get help with several projects through the district. These are to create secure entrances at each building in the district.  The projects range from around $220,000-$1,000,000 depending on the site.

District 742 is also hoping for help with projects in their district as well.

The process for the grants opens Monday, and they'll be awarded on a first-come, first served basis based on the calendar date the application is submitted.

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