The Redwood Area School District has set Tuesday, Aug. 9 for the public to vote on a possible $47 million replacement of Reede Gray Elementary School, and upgrade of Redwood Valley High School / Middle School.

Reede Gray Elementary School in Redwood Falls is 64 years old, and showing its age. Most of Reede Gray Elementary School’s operating systems have reached the end of their life expectancy. In addition, Redwood Valley High School / Middle School dates from the early 1990s, but is still in need of maintenance and upgrading.

That puts the school board, and the community, in an quandary: what to do from this point?

The Twin Cities-based firm of WOLD Architects and Engineers looked over the two facilities, and reached some conclusions based on the buildings’ current condition and future needs.

The total to fix Reede Gray Elementary School — not including any remodeling or cosmetic uplift — is $29.6 million. This includes $14 million in heating and air conditioning upgrades, $7.5 in exterior (roof, tuckpointing, windows), and other interior accessibility issues. These are cosmetic and physical improvements, with no additional learning spaces. The projected cost for a suitable replacement elementary school is $44 million.

The item at Redwood Valley Middle School / High School judged most important was a secured entry. The current system, with unlocked doors that enter two directions, is impossible to monitor. The recommendation coming out of the steering committee is to implement a secured entry that directs all traffic in one route through the district office. The cost for this has been estimated $550,000 for a new safe and secure entrance at this site.

The Redwood Area School District’s Board of Education approved a Tuesday, Aug. 9 election date about how to handle fixing up or replacing the current facilities. Two questions will be on the ballots:

1) A request to demolish and replace Reede Gray Elementary School and expand 0-3 childcare expansion, and add a secure entrance to Redwood Valley High School / Middle School at a cost of $47.3 million, and

2) a request for an additional $1.9 million for outdoor multi-purpose activity enhancements.

Becky Cselovszki, Supt. of Schools, stated informational sessions for the public will be held on:
Thursday, May 19, at 6 p.m. at the Reede Gray Elementary School gym (at this meeting, the building will be open for the public to look around)
Monday, May 23, at 4:30 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center
Saturday, June 25, at 9 a.m. at the Reede Gray Elementary School gym