Stillwater schools asking voters for $175 million for new facilities, security upgrades

An east metro school district is planning to ask voters this fall to approve a bonding proposal to expand facilities and improve security.

The school board for Stillwater Area Public Schools signed off on the $175 million bond referendum at its meeting on Tuesday, putting it up to voters this November.

The school district says it projects around 1,000 students to join its schools over the next 10 years. Given that projection and the state of current facilities, the district says it could use newer, larger buildings to provide more learning spaces for students and make security upgrades.

According to the district’s website, the money in the proposal would go toward replacing Lake Elmo Elementary School with a newer, larger building and doing the same with Andersen Elementary School. Additionally, Oak-Land Middle School would be remodeled and gain an addition, and all district facilities would get safety improvements, including a secured front entrance addition and remodel at Stillwater Area High School.

That plan was put together based on feedback from two district-wide surveys, community meetings and the work of a community Facilities Planning Team, Stillwater Area Public Schools said.

The district estimates the referendum’s approval would mean taxpayers with a $500,000 home would pay an extra $17 per month.

The decision will be up to voters on Nov. 7.