Joplin Elementary School measures to head to the ballot on April 7th

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JOPLIN, Mo. — A Joplin elementary school could be seeing some big changes – if voters approve a ballot question next spring.

Kelsey Norman Elementary School at 28th and New Hampshire.

The original school is more than half a century old and needs some updates.

Melinda Moss, Joplin Superintendent, said, “There’s overcrowding at Kelsey Norman.”

One of the big reasons Joplin school leaders say that Kelsey Norman Elementary School needs more space.

Chad Greer, CGA Architects, said, “The addition of classroom space and flexible space part of the improvements would be the necessary educational space they’re missing at this point.”

Adding new classrooms would also the district to eliminate educational trailers currently in use as classroom overflow.
And an expansion would also address other specific needs.

“They’re missing some spaces associated with special education some of the needed classroom spaces and work spaces associated with that.”

Preliminary plans also call for new flexible space that could be used for everything from recess to community meetings.

The expansion would likely sit on the north side of the existing building.

But voters must approve the plan before it’s official.

A no-tax-increase bond question will go on the ballot, addressing needs at Kelsey Norman.

The 25 million dollar total would also build a new grade school at Dover Hill, replacing two of the districts older schools.

“What really stepped up the urgency were the safety issues at the Columbia campus as well as the traffic proximity at west central to the highway there at 7th,” said Moss.

Early estimates for the cost for the Kelsey Norman addition could be around $2,700,000 dollars.

Voters will decide the question on April 7th.

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