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Springfield community votes on final District 186 facilities renovation scenarios

Tuesday, community members cast their final vote for facility renovations to transform Springfield schools. (WRSP)

Soon, all District 186 schools will see a major makeover.

Tuesday, community members cast their final vote for facility renovations to transform Springfield schools.

"As a mom and a graduate of the Springfield public schools,” said Superintendent Jennifer Gill. “I want to see the very best schools that we can have for our students."

Wednesday, hundreds including parents, gathered to choose the best plan.

“It's home for me as a graduate. It's home for our students,” said Mary Tennant, a 186 teacher for 20 years. “We're a family and we do things for each other, we help each other and I feel like this will be a blessing for our kids."

Renovation scenarios narrowed down over ten months for two groups: 186 schools and athletic fields.

The verdict is HS Scenario 2 was chosen of two choices which includes reconstruction at Lanphier High School instead of building anew.

It includes Washington Middle School getting an enlarged cafeteria and Southeast High School getting auditorium and gym renovations.

Athletic Scenario 5 of three choices won the second vote, which includes a new indoor athletic complex at Lanphier High.

But this construction, projected to cost hundreds of millions of dollars, does not have a funding plan which has left many with concerns.

Roy Williams Jr, from Faith Coalition Education Task Force Chairman, said he’s worried about costs and equity, especially after the state passed a new formula for funding public schools.

“My interest is how they’re going to implement the new funding formula,” said Williams. “And the impacts that will have so I think we are a little premature on it. So, it's hard to answer that questions until we learn a lot more."

The superintendent said the scenarios are not set in stone.

Now, they'll create an outline for the board of education including a budget.

"Every year that I go throughout my career,” said Superintendent Gill. “Or into the future that we continue to improve in our community and this plan will actually help us get there."

For the next month, school officials will review the picks from Tuesday night and put together a final presentation.

It will go before the Board of Education at the start of December.

They will have a final approval then.

You can go to http://www.sps186.org/schools/springfield/ and find the scenarios.

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