A new elementary facility is going to be the best alternative for the Decorah School District in the long run. 
That was the consensus among the Decorah School Board Monday evening, as they discussed the future of the Disrict’s oldest elementary facilities, John Cline and West Side schools. 
The discussion came following a study and recent recommendation by the District’s Shareholders, a citizens’ advisory committee appointed by the District. 
Board Vice President Melanie Tietz said the District has done an excellent job at looking at its buildings and deciding if they are structurally sound. In the case of Carrie Lee Elementary and Decorah High School, decisions were made to renovate the facilities. 
“In this case, I don’t think we can make a case that this building has good bones,” said Tietz. 

Options
In tasking the Shareholders Committee, the Board had provided them with three possible scenarios, which had been previously been proposed by StruXtures Architects of Waterloo.
The first option included addressing and updating the heating and ventilation systems at both John Cline and West Side Elementary. The disadvantage of this option is it would do nothing to address a shortage of classroom space.
The second option would be to either remodel both John Cline and West Side schools, or consolidate the two schools, adding on to John Cline School to accommodate West Side students. The disadvantage of this possibility is that it could end up costing up to 60 percent of building a completely new elementary school.
The final option considered was to build a completely new elementary school, which would address the needs at both West Side and John Cline.
Advantages of this plan have been listed as increased security, additional green space, increased energy efficiency, larger gymnasium space and opportunity for growth.

North Winn
When Board Member John Hjelle asked how the future of the North Winneshiek District might impact the District’s decision about how to proceed with its own facilities, Board President Ron Fadness responded, “No matter what happens with North Winn, that doesn’t change the fact that John Cline is inadequate to meet our needs at this time.”
Fadness added he doesn’t think it would be a good use of taxpayer money to throw a “Band-aid” on facilities that aren’t going to work down the road.
“It seems to me in this instance it would be foolhardy to continue to spend money on the current John Cline facilitend up costing up to 60 percent of building a completely new elementary school.
The final option considered was to build a completely new elementary school, which would address the needs at both West Side and John Cline.
Advantages of this plan have been listed as increased security, additional green space, increased energy efficiency, larger gymnasium space and opportunity for growth.

North Winn
When Board Member John Hjelle asked how the future of the North Winneshiek District might impact the District’s decision about how to proceed with its own facilities, Board President Ron Fadness responded, “No matter what happens with North Winn, that doesn’t change the fact that John Cline is inadequate to meet our needs at this time.”
Fadness added he doesn’t think it would be a good use of taxpayer money to throw a “Band-aid” on facilities that aren’t going to work down the road.
“It seems to me in this instance it would be foolhardy to continue to spend money on the current John Cline facility … The smart move here is to not put more money into that facility,” said Fadness.
Superintendent Mike Haluska said the next step would be to bring in StruXtures Architects of Waterloo to start discussing site options.