• Do you have feedback to share regarding next steps following the Referendum? Please take a moment to email your ideas at Please note that emails will not be responded to on an individual basis; however, the School Board and District will review all correspondence and present common themes.

    REFERENDUM OUTCOME - A Letter from Superintendent Kocanda and School Board President Kristen Hertel

    April 2, 2019

    Dear Parents, Staff, and Community,

    We wanted to share tonight's unofficial referendum results with you. With ten out of eleven precincts reporting, results indicate the community's rejection of the facility plan.  Please know we recognize all who have stayed informed, engaged in planning, and provided important feedback to help shape solutions. Information and next steps will be shared in the coming weeks as we maintain our commitment to clear and consistent communication.

    Over the past two years during this planning process and referendum outreach, we held firm to our commitment to community engagement, clear and transparent communication, a focus on teaching and learning, and fiscal responsibility. 

    Although the referendum did not pass, we are dedicated to moving forward in a civil, collaborative manner to determine next steps in how to manage aging facilities and best meet the educational needs of our students.


    Dr. Trisha Kocanda, Superintendent & Ms. Kristen Hertel, School Board President

    On Tuesday, December 18, the District 36 School Board unanimously approved a $90.6 million referendum for community vote on April 2, 2019. With the total cost of the proposed facilities projects estimated at $100.6 million, the School Board committed $10 million from reserves to offset the cost of the referendum and lower the overall tax impact. If approved, the estimated tax increase over the current bond obligation-tax levy would be approximately $276 (annually) per $1 million of property value.

    School Board President, Kristen Hertel stated, “This plan was reviewed from a teaching and learning perspective, from a facilities perspective, and through the lens of what is fiscally responsible. It aligns with our community’s value for neighborhood schools, our commitment to remain good stewards of taxpayer resources, and our community’s high expectations for progressive schools. The final decision is now in our community’s hands.”

    The proposed spring referendum reflects priority facilities projects identified in the recently approved long-range Educational Master Facility Plan (EMFP). The EMFP addresses comprehensive facilities improvements and aging infrastructure, a commitment to maintain the neighborhood school model with (3) K-4 elementary schools and (1) consolidated 5-8 campus, and upholds a progressive educational vision for teaching and learning.

    Priority projects identified for the April 2, 2019, referendum include:

    • Health Life Safety Code required projects

    • Safety and security enhancements

    • ADA accessibility upgrades

    • HVAC, electrical and plumbing upgrades

    • Addition of 3 classrooms and a gym at Crow Island

    • Renovations or upgrades to existing space for multi-purpose cafeterias at each school and renovations to the library resource centers at Crow Island and Carleton Washburne, and

    • Additions and renovations for classroom wings, Makerspace, and STEAM space at Carleton Washburne

    Project details, costs, tax impacts and upcoming community events will be posted on this webpage.

    What projects are proposed for each school?