Failed bond proposals send schools back to drawing board

School leaders in Traverse City, Elk Rapids and Kalkaska are looking for other ways to find money for school projects.

School leaders in Traverse City, Elk Rapids and Kalkaska are looking for other ways to find money for school projects. School issues in all three districts were defeated in Tuesday's election.

â??This is definitely going to be aâ?¦ school board decision we're going to discuss through committee and the entire board. We'll take all the information that we have right now and see if there's things we could've done better,â?? said Steve Prissel, Elk Rapids Public Schools Superintendent.

The Elk Rapids school bond proposal, which would have improved security, and built a new gym failed by only 12 votes.

â??We felt like we did a pretty good job of educating the community. We had a lot of information out thereâ?¦ we did go in very confident but we also understand too that with proposals like this you just never know until the next day.â??

It was a similar story in Traverse City where two T-CAPS proposals failed after a similar proposal was turned down by voters in May. The first proposal was to allow the school to build or remodel buildings, and the other for auditorium renovations at Central High School.

â??I think that what we'll have to do is shift our financial priorities in our district to make sure that we can cover the immediate needs and look at where we can trim other parts of our general fund budget in order to meet some of our needs that really aren't articulated in the previous bond proposals,â?? said Steve Cousins, Traverse City Area Public Schools Superintendent.

In Kalkaska voters rejected the proposal to update computers. The superintendent believes the election results could impact students in the classroom and beyond.

â??We pride ourselves on having kids ready to go to college or into the work force, but if you don't have the particular equipment to make that happen then it does affect them,â?? said Lee Sandy, Kalkaska Public Schools Superintendent.

The Kalkaska superintendent says the district will wait for a long-term technology study to wrap up before any decisions are made. He expects that study to be ready by June and says another proposal could be ready by this time next year.

The Elk Rapids superintendent said he believes the economy played a part in voters not passing the proposal. It will be up to the school leaders to decide if the proposal will go back to the voters.