The Owatonna School Board this week approved the plan for a Nov. 3 vote on a $78 million referendum. A sports complex question is not part of the proposal.

The bond referendum question posed to Owatonna school district voters totals $77.9 million. Additions to Willow Creek and the junior high would allow for a switch to a more common grouping of grades. Willow Creek would become a K-5 school and the junior high would house grades 6-8. This move would ease crowding at the elementary level. Lincoln and McKinley elementary schools would expand, eliminating portables.

School safety and security upgrades are part of the recommendation. Infrastructure improvements would include heating and cooling systems, fire safety systems and parking lot repair.

A land purchase is NOT part of the proposal.

A community task force had also studied the concept of gym space additions or other athletic complex ideas. Those meetings were part of a 10-year master plan for addressing athletic needs. That is not part of the referendum that will go before voters this November.

Willow Creek school in Owatonna would be converted to a K-5 school if the November referendum passes. Roy Koenig, Townsquare Media