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Keith Berg, Fargo, Published March 07 2014

Letter: A few concerns about school vote

As a concerned parent of a Fargo elementary school student and concerned taxpayer, I am struggling with the upcoming mill levy vote Tuesday.

Not only has the Fargo School Board decided to keep every school open, but they’re also spending millions to add air conditioning to some very old elementary schools.

There are six elementary buildings with enrollment between 140-220 students. The three largest elementary schools have more than 600.

According to a March 13, 2013, report of elementary building costs, per-pupil costs ranged from $8,079 at Kennedy (728 students) to $13,416 at McKinley (173 students).

Centennial (640 students) had the second-lowest cost at $8,454 and Bennett (605 students) came in at $8,495.

It appears the school district could save $5 million to $6 million per year by operating fewer and larger schools. It might have to spend $12 million to build a new school, but the payback is pretty quick.