Voters head to polls to decide the futures of 2 area school syst - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Voters head to polls to decide the futures of 2 area school systems


BYRON, Minn. (KTTC) -- The high schoolers are seeing it.

"For a lower kid it's really, really packed with like 40 per class I think, while us it's like 20," says Grand Meadow high school student Dylan Jech.

The student's younger siblings are feeling it

"They're getting knowledge, but it's not hands on as like what ours are," says Grand Meadow high school student Jamie Stevens. 

Southeast Minnesota's growing population is creating an overflow of bright young minds and bright young bodies.

"As class sizes grow particularly in the primary grades there is an impact on learning, and so we're like I said, trying to put our best foot forward and give our kids the best educational experience they can have," says Byron Superintendent Jeff Elstad.

For the Byron and Grand Meadow schools, that best foot forward is a bond referendum vote for new multi-million dollar school buildings for the lower grades.

"We are new to the district and we have a first grader and we just know that they need a new school because they are growing by bounds and leaps," says Byron resident Jena Johnson.

As voters take to the polls to settle the future of these school systems some find it easy to look ahead.

"You really have to look at the future and the future is what's walking in these hallways," says Charles Salisbury a Byron resident with nieces and nephews in the school system.

Others are concerned about where the direction of their community is going now.

"From the beginning, before this building was even built we were told it was going to be not as much, and where are these expenditures going to go? Are they gonna go higher? Are we gonna go over what we want to be? Is it possible that we could do other options?" says Alex Olson a resident of Grand Meadow.

For now that answer is, no. It is up to the voters to choose what their answer is.

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