Simplified: Harrisburg School District overcame a major hurdle in its work to keep up with a fast-growing student population when voters on Tuesday approved a $60 million bond to fund two new schools.

Why it matters:

  • Voters approved the bond by an 83 percent margin, showing strong support for the district's plan to accommodate growth, board members said Tuesday night.
  • Harrisburg's enrollment has more than quintupled in the last 20 years, and projections show another 3,000 students could join the district by 2030.
  • Those kids need somewhere to go, but so do the kids already in Harrisburg elementary and middle schools. Even without new students, the high school will be at capacity in the coming years.
  • The bond will fund construction of two new buildings: a third middle school, and a freshman academy that will eventually become a second high school.
  • About 5 percent of eligible voters voted in Tuesday's election.
"We needed this bond to pass, and once again the voters, our community, agreed overwhelmingly," said board member Mike Knudson.

What happens next?

Design starts this summer, with construction set to begin in September, Superintendent Tim Graf told Sioux Falls Simplified last month. Both buildings are expected to be completed in time for the 2023-24 academic year.

"Growth has become part of the culture in Harrisburg District in all aspects of the word," board member Terra Vennard said, "and it's exciting to continue to move those plans forward with the passing of the bond issue."