The Cedar Rapids Community School District is committed to providing the highest quality education and resources to its students and the community. However, despite a strong effort to secure vital funding for educational improvements, voters rejected the district’s proposed $220 million bond referendum in the November 7th election. The vote count released by the Linn County Auditor’s Office shows the bond issue only received 39% approval. A 60% approval was needed to pass.

CRCSD’s bond referendum addressed critical infrastructure and educational needs within the school district. It included plans to renovate and modernize aging school buildings, enhance career and technical educational programming, and ensure a safe and conducive learning environment for students. 

“I would like to thank our Board of Education, our staff, our community, and our business leaders for their hard work and unwavering support,” commented Superintendent Dr. Tawana Grover.

In light of the election outcome, district administration, alongside the members of the CRCSD Board of Education, will be reevaluating our Comprehensive Facilities Master Plan. The current challenges of our school facilities are not going away and will still need to be addressed – security, ADA updates, heating and cooling systems, technology, etc. We will continue to engage our Board of Education, staff, families, and community to determine the best solutions moving forward.

“The board’s decision to put the bond referendum on the ballot was a crucial first step. Today, the people of CRCSD had the opportunity to decide, and they spoke. Collaborative efforts between the district and the community are of utmost importance to the success of our students. Investing in our schools is synonymous with investing in our community, and we will continue to engage with our constituents,” commented Board President David Tominsky.

There have been a lot of thoughtful considerations regarding the future of our facilities, and our decisions have always been about what is best for our students and staff,” stated Superintendent Grover. “While we may be a little discouraged with the results, we are also encouraged. This process gave us an opportunity to engage with the community, which is something they have wanted for a long time. It allowed us to have conversations and answer questions that expanded beyond our facilities. We look forward to continuing to build together.” 

The bond is just one part of the district’s new Strategic Plan. We are committed to continuing to work towards the other goals we have set as a part of this plan. Building a strong foundation of trust and credibility with the community is critical for the success of any organization.  We will continue to work to elevate the plans, pathways, and passions of our students, energize our staff, and stabilize the district. We want to increase family engagement, as active involvement is paramount to the success and accomplishments of our students. The district plans to keep the community informed about any changes in the district’s Comprehensive Facilities Master Plans moving forward and any future initiatives through transparent and inclusive communications.

This was the district’s first GO bond ask in 23 years.