IMAGE: Blue Graduation Caps

Funding marked for current, upgraded programs and facility improvements

On January 8, the Delavan-Darien Board of Education unanimously authorized an operating referendum for community vote.  If approved, the April 3 referendum would provide $500,000 per year for three years (2018/19 – 2020/21) for academic and vocational classroom improvements, upgrades for culinary arts and auto programs, and improvements to Borg Memorial Stadium including artificial turf for football and soccer; and $3 million per year on a recurring basis (2018/19 and thereafter), for operating costs to maintain the District’s current educational programs.

The estimated tax impact of the proposed referendum would be $203 per year on a $100,000 home for the first three years (2018/19- 2020/21), and $173 per year thereafter.

“Preparing our students with relevant skills and experiences to fill available jobs and meet the needs of our community employers is critical,” said Superintendent Robert Crist, Ed.D. “This requires intentional planning and building our educational programs, in partnership with our community.”

The District recently reintroduced auto mechanics and culinary arts curriculum in response to the demand for graduates with credit in these areas. Referendum approval would provide funding specifically for the remodel of Family and Consumer Science classrooms and refurbishing the auto shop with adequate tools, materials, and equipment.

In addition, increased funding on a recurring basis would sustain current educational offerings and highly-qualified staff to serve the district’s choice Dual Language Education program, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), music, art, physical education and health programming; computer technology for all students, Fabrication Labs, college preparatory options, athletics and extra-curricular offerings, and after-school programs.

“These programs will continue to grow and make a difference, attracting students to our schools,” said School Board President Dr. Jeff Scherer. “We celebrate the District’s hard work and recognition for Exceeding Expectations on the most recent state report cards. We are on track and offering remarkable opportunities for our students.”

The recurring referendum will raise the district’s revenue limit, or the amount the district is allowed to raise through the local tax base. Historically, the Delavan-Darien School District has had a below-state-average revenue limit number.

A $1.25 million non-recurring referendum passed in 2015 boosted the district’s revenue limit from $9,356 to $9,841 per student. That referendum expired after the 2016-17 school year. The current per-pupil revenue limit has dropped back down to $9,440 per student.

Passage of the proposed referendum would boost the district’s revenue limit to $10,762 per child for the first three years, and to $10,573 per student thereafter, said Business Administrator Mark Powell. The state average revenue limit per pupil last school year was $10,439, according to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.

Scherer shared the Board’s commitment to informing all residents of the referendum facts through a series of mailings, the District website, and informational sessions to be held over the coming weeks and months leading up to the referendum.

For questions, please contact: Superintendent Robert Crist, 262-233-6751 or

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