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Coleman Community Schools propose 15 million dollar bond

Cornelia Li for NPR

On May 2, 2023 voters in the mid-Michigan community of Coleman are asked to vote on a proposal to upgrade its Junior-Senior High School.

In August of 2021, Coleman Community Schools asked voters to approve a variety of upgrades on projects in the district, but the proposal didn’t pass. Opponents argued it included too many amenities.

The district asked the community for their input before they put together the proposal for the May ballot. Key differences in the May proposal compared to the 2021 proposal are the removal of additions to the school. This includes the proposed new auditorium, new auxiliary gym, and the elementary school projects. The district said only crucial information is included in the May bond proposal.

Superintendent Jennifer McCormack said the district hopes to renovate the 48-year-old Junior-Senior High School. She says the interior of the building has not been improved since it was built, and the district is worried about the safety of students.

She said, "Right now our media center is wide open. So again, in closing that media center, so there are walls and doors in between hallways. So safety is the primary piece."

McCormack said, “it was originally an open concept building and then a few years after it opened they made it closed concept with divider walls that are hollow and metal.”

Here is a complete list of the proposals from the district's website.

  • Jr./Sr. High School projects
  • Cinder block and drywall building materials versus hollow divider walls to increase safety
  • Replace all windows for increased safety (damaged window pictured at right)
  • Complete renovation of Jr./Sr. instructional spaces and gym locker rooms (both locker rooms pictured at right) through reconfiguration and recapture of current space to increase the number of classrooms, instructional support and storage spaces
  • Addition of 2 classrooms to "square" building and add more necessary instructional areas
  • Enclose media center to recapture space that provides for a secure and quiet work environment
  • Replacement of pavement in 2 parking lots
  • Replacement of student lockers
  • Updated electrical and HVAC including air conditioning and uni-ventilators original to the building (example of damaged, noisy heater in a classroom pictured at right)
  • Instructional Technology
  • Minor renovations of current auditorium: stage (current stage floor pictured at right), seating, carpeting, auditorium
  • Buses
  • Removal of wooden bleachers in gym
  • Minor renovations of kitchen, cafeteria
  • Complete renovation of high school bathrooms
Ella Pierzecki is a freshman at Central Michigan University. She is majoring in Broadcast and Cinematic Arts and minoring in Journalism and Political Science. Ella is from Canton, Michigan where she loves to play with her dog. She is a huge baseball fan and loves cheering on the Detroit Tigers. At WCMU, Ella is excited to meet new people and develop her skills in journalism.