New High School – It’s a Go, Gales!

Lancaster residents invest in students’ futures

6th grade students from Thomas Ewing Jr. High are slated to be one of the first classes to attend the new high school.

6th grade students from Thomas Ewing Jr. High are slated to be one of the first classes to attend the new high school.

Madison Culbertson, Print Layout Assistant Editor

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The bond levy to build a new high school in the city of Lancaster was approved by 61% of the voters. More than 2,400 taxpayers voted in favor of the bond issue, while just over 1,500 voted against it. The new high school is expected to be completed in five years.

“I’m very grateful to the voters in the school district who came out and supported us,” said Superintendent of Lancaster City Schools, Steve Wigton.

“This school will benefit the students, the school district and the community as a whole,” he said.

Julie Bay, a Lancaster resident for 33 years said she voted to approve the high school levy because she believes it is an investment into the future of the community.

Julie Bay, a Lancaster resident voted for the new high school so that students like her grandson, Trevor would benefit from a state of the art facility.

“We need to set the bar high and keep the momentum strong because we have so much to lose if we don’t,” she said.

“With this investment into our future, the Lancaster community is stronger than ever. It’s impossible not to be excited and motivated by the tone of success set by former alumni and other taxpayers.”

The 3.7 mill bond issue will cost homeowners less than $11 a month based on a home valued at $100,000 and will generate about $66 million. In addition, the state of Ohio will contribute about $35 million to fund construction for a new high school.

The new high school is part of a long-term plan to update Lancaster City School buildings with modern security, air conditioning, and updated technology.

During planning and construction, students will remain in the current high school structures while the new high school facility is being built on existing athletic fields to the north of the current building. Once the new building is completed and classes start there, the old building will be demolished and that space will be used as parking.

Prior to the vote, Lancaster City Schools employees and their families canvassed local neighborhoods to inform voters about the levy and encourage them to vote.

Superintendent Steve Wigton told the Lancaster Eagle-Gazette that it took a team effort to get the levy passed.

“There are a lot of people to thank for getting this levy passed, a lot of people poured themselves into winning,” he said.