Report finds Bloomer High School needs millions in repairs

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BLOOMER, Wis. (WEAU) -- The state of Bloomer's High School is in rough shape and it's going to take a lot of money to bring it up to code. That's the result of a recent report conducted by the Cooperative Educational Service Agency or CESA 10.

The report details an extensive amount of repairs and upgrades needed, leaving the district with the tough task of deciding how to proceed. "The study that CESA 10 did found that our high school, while we've done a nice job of maintaining it, has really hit the end of its useful life in a lot of areas," says Brian Misfeldt, Superintendent for the School District of Bloomer.

After Bloomer's Middle School was built in 2002, the district developed a long term facilities plan. "Part of our strategic plan over the last five years has really been to look at the current status of our high school and look into the future to decide what we want to do," says Misfeldt.

A recent review conducted by CESA 10 is providing recommendations for the high school. According to the report, major repairs and upgrades are needed now and over the next five to ten years. Areas that need improvement included electrical, plumbing, and inadequate space.

CESA 10 officials presented recommendations during a recent school board meeting and they were pricey. "If we wanted to address all of the items on the CESA 10 report it would be about $15 million they're estimating and you can also run into with older buildings you can run into issues as you're doing those renovations,” said Misfeldt.

This leaving the district with the tough task of deciding if money should be put into repairs or constructing a new building all together. Especially since the district has seen a steady increase in enrollment in recent years.

"CESA 10 really reinforced the idea that one of the biggest concerns is the space concerns and education has really changed over the last 60 years since this building was built and as a result we have some inadequate space but there's also areas that need to be addressed and they expressed that those areas could go another 10 years without any issues or we could have problems tomorrow," said Misfeldt.

The school board approved a motion to have a community survey mailed out before June 2020. The board will use that survey, and the CESA 10 report, to determine when and how to put together a referendum for a new high school. The district says the school board is committed to working with the community to come up with a solution that fits educationally and fiscally.