Rossford hosts forum on decrepit school buildings

By Dick Berry - email

Posted by Nick Dutton - email

ROSSFORD, OH (WTOL) -  Folks in Rossford may soon vote on a school bond issue to replace crumbing schools, but some worry about their proximity to Toledo's new casino.

The school district's current plan is to consolidate operations into three or four new buildings, down from the eight existing buildings.

Several of the buildings are more than 80 year old and are crumbling. In one, the boiler room is a wreck; there are leaks and cracked walls everywhere.

Teacher Terry Reichert likens the situation to car repairing an old car. She wonders how long it will be before the district buildings something new, instead of spending money on repairs.

"Rossford is really turning the page and a new image is starting to emerge. Facilities are a key component to that new image," said Rossford Superintendent Susan Lang.

Less than a mile from the existing Rossford school buildings, construction will soon begin on Penn National's Hollywood Casino.

But some wonder if the new schools should be built close of to the casino.

Rossford resident Gary Runnels believes gambling and education is a bad combination. "And with the traffic for this establishment, it's going to be havoc. Lots of drinkers in that group, too."

Some also worry about other business the casino might attract like strip clubs and liquor stores.

If casino proximity is an issue, the district owns land on Glenwood Avenue that could be utilized.

"I think it's up to the parents to decide what they think about the location and how we can work together with the city and Penn National to make it a winner for all of us," said Lang.

A bond issue for the new buildings could go before the voters as early as November.

A public forum will be held Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the Rossford High School auditorium to discuss the district's facilities.

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