Gladbrook-Reinbeck School District to remain - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Gladbrook-Reinbeck School District to remain

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UPDATE:  Throughout the Gladbrook-Reinbeck community, many people are proudly saying, "We are GR," and they will remain GR.

The dissolution of the district was brought to a vote Tuesday, following a petition asking for the district to be dissolved.  The proposed dissolution failed with an overwhelming majority of people voting to keep the GR district.

One high school senior who voted 'no' in order to keep the Rebels fighting, told KWWL the uncertainty of the school was all the students were thinking about, Tuesday.  The vote clearly caused emotions to run high on both sides of the dispute. 

"It is a very emotional time right now. I never thought it would come to this. We are two communities. We came together as one, and we have to stand as one. We should not be bickering back and forth," said GR parent, Michelle Keller, who voted to keep the district.

Many of the people who voted to dissolve the district pointed to the closing of the school in Gladbrook two years ago, as the reason.

"It's really hard when you are walking around town to see the school closed," said Gladbrook resident Sandy Dale, who voted to dissolve the district. "As far as I can see, because there are so many kids that are open-enrolled to the Green-Mountain-Garwin district, I think we will see that continue."

According to Gladbrook-Reinbeck Superintendent David Hill, there are roughly a 100 students that are currently open-enrolled in other districts.  Hill told KWWL the support the school received from the entire GR community was tremendous. He said the district will continue to provide students with a strong education and would welcome with open arms any students who want to return to the district.


Gladbrook-Reinbeck School District will remain in place.  Here is the breakdown:

YES: 690 (31%)

NO: 1,545 (69%)

50% Needed:

Failed (District will remain)


A vote to determine the fate of an eastern Iowa school district is now just one night away.

Tomorrow, voters in eastern Iowa will decide whether or not to dissolve the Gladbrook-Reinbeck school district. A yes-or-no vote will determine if the district stays or goes and it's something that has passionate supporters on both sides.

If you vote "no", the school will stay the same but if you vote "yes" the school will dissolve and the students will be split between 5 other school districts.

"Vote No" signs are posted all over Michael Ackley's lawn, home and car.

"It's been on there for 3 weeks," he says.

His daughter Britiney is a junior at Gladbrook Reinbeck. She says she wants to spend her senior year as a rebel.

"I want to graduate with all my friends because I've been with most of them since kindergarten," she says.

But that might not happen. About 20 minutes away in Gladbrook, it's a different site with "Vote Yes" signs, in support of a dissolution of Gladbrook-Reinbeck. As of last October, there were less than 500 students in the district.

Joan Surber says she's voting "yes".

She says, "If they continue the way they are, the state will have to step in because they will get to the point where they can't afford to be a school anymore. Then, there's the possibility of us having to share with Dike-New Hartford and having our children go from here to there...that's a 50-60 mile trip one-way."

Many say it's truly a decision that's splitting the towns. Tension started to rise between the two towns after the school board voted to close down Gladbrook's school in town.

Surber says, "Nobody wants to come here because there's no school. It took our hearts down it really did, it just stabbed our hearts in the community."

Michael is hoping the same thing doesn't happen in Reinbeck, but especially to his daughter.

"You cant let these kids suffer because a lot of them are going to suffer," he says.

It's not just affecting these two towns, if the "Vote Yes" wins, 5 other school districts will be affected. Voting is tomorrow from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m.

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