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Jefferson City getting second public high school after Proposition J, Proposition C both pass

UPDATE: Jefferson City residents voted overwhelming in favor of both Proposition J and Proposition C. 62.86% voted in favor of Proposition J while 60.83% voted in favor of Proposition C.

“The second high school would open in the Fall of ’19, which would be for this year’s sixth and seventh grade class is the plan at this time,” said Larry Linthacum, the superintendent of Jefferson City Public Schools.

“The Fall of ’19 having two classes, then have a transition phase-in approach within the next year, the Fall of ’20, having the eighth grade class move up, having a freshman, sophomore and junior class. And then so forth the next year.”

ORIGINAL: Jefferson City voters will decide Tuesday if a second public high school will be built.

Proposition J on the April ballot is a $130 million bond issue to build a new high school and make major renovations to the current high school. Proposition J requires a 4/7 majority vote to pass.

Proposition C is an operating tax levy to operate the second school and fund additional K-12 instructional resources across the district. Proposition C requires a simple majority to pass.

If passed, residents in the Jefferson City Public Schools district will pay a total tax levy increase of $1.10. That would bump up the current JCPS levy from $3.69 to $4.79.

The second high school would cost about $85 million to build. It would be located near St. Mary’s Hospital off Highway 179 on land already owned by the district.

The remaining $45 million of the bond issue would be used for renovations at the current high school. The district would educate ninth to 12th graders at both high schools, instead of sending high school freshman to the Simonsen Ninth Grade Center.

Resources funded by Proposition C would include new textbooks with planning resources for teachers, technology improvements in K-8 classrooms, behavioral and mental health supports including more licensed counselors and a preschool classroom located in Callaway County.

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