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Racine Unified School District superintendent Lolli Haws plans to speak at the Caledonia village board meeting to talk about a $128 million referendum that passed in November.

The village board meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 19 at  at the East Side Community Center, 6156 Douglas Ave.

Haws’ attendance at the village board meeting comes at a time when the village is having preliminary discussions about forming its own school district.

Bob Bradley, president of the Caledonia village board, said that Haws’ attendance at the meeting didn’t have anything to do with the discussion around whether the village will consider funding a study that would look at the costs associated with Caledonia forming an independent school district.

“She (Haws) asked to come address the board to talk about what the plan and vision is for Racine Unified because some of the schools that are mentioned as part of the upgrades — Olympia Brown Elementary, North Park Elementary and Gifford Elementary — are in Caledonia,” Bradley said.

The referendum totals $128 million – $8.5 million annually for 15 years – that will pay for various repairs, upgrades, maintenance, and technology improvements at every school in the district. Three of those buildings are in Caledonia, and plans include:

  • Replacing Olympia Brown because repairs are too costly;
  • Building an addition onto Gifford to expand to a K- 8 school; and
  • Address a list of needs at North Park.

But now that the Racine Unified referendum has been approved, separating from the District might prove a little less financially daunting to those leading the charge for an independent Caledonia school district. The Caledonia Schools Facebook page, a group calling for Caledonia to form its own school district, is asking the community to attend the meeting.

“More than one village board member will be prepared with a question or two for the Superintendent, and we are hoping to make a massive impact on the board as it considers several things over the next several weeks, from funding a formal study to placing an advisory referendum on the April ballot,” according to the Facebook page.

 

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.