Bond for updates to Tipton High School fails, school leaders plan to revise

Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 5:56 PM CDT
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TIPTON, Iowa (KCRG) - Tipton High School, in Cedar County, won’t be seeing any upgrades in the near future after voters rejected an $18.9 million bond this week.

On 80 degree days like Friday, students and staff at Tipton High School try to keep cool with the help of just a few fans. Air conditioning is one of many upgrades the district asked voters to fund with a bond.

“We wanted to enhance the learning environment for the students. We have classrooms that are outdated, that are 100 years old so they need some additional TLC,” Jason Wester, Tipton superintendent, said.

But that bond failed 52% to 48% this week, with a remarkably low voter turnout.

“The success or failure of this was determined by 20% of the eligible population,” Wester said. “We have 25% determining the educational landscape in Tipton for the next 10 to 15 years.”

Wester said the next step is to figure out why people voted no and to reevaluate their options so that next year at this time, they’ll hopefully vote yes.

“What we’ve heard is that the price tag was too high. It was $2.72 per $100,000,” Wester said, referring to the property tax burden.

Once they can pinpoint other reasons, they will release a survey.

“What are some things that if we added or took off would allow you to feel comfortable voting for it?” Wester said. “We just want to figure out to better engage and really get people out to vote that’s going to impact generations of learners to come.”

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