The results from the Wautoma Area School District Community Survey mailed out to residents in October were presented by School Perceptions Research Director and Project Manager Rob DeMeuse, Ph.D., during the Board of Education’s  Monthly Meeting on Nov. 14 at Wautoma High School.

During his virtual presentation, DeMeuse explained that of the 706 residents who answered the survey, 80% of staff, 73% of parents, and 56% of non-parents/non-staff respondents would support a referendum to pursue building a new elementary school over updating and renovating the current building. The $41.3 million price tag for a new building would include the purchasing of land, the removal and reallocation of the school’s current land, as well as the building and furnishing of the new school.

According to DeMeuse, a response of over 700 community members is well over what they are looking for in order to gauge an idea of where the community is heading. The typical response School Perceptions hopes for in a community the size of Wautoma is around 400.

Within the survey, WASD explained to taxpayers the list of improvements to the current elementary school, including security, safety, and accessibility; major building systems; and classroom and support spaces. Even though the maintenance staff does all they can do to keep the buildings in good condition, some of Riverview’s issues are too costly and cannot be covered in the annual budget.

While analyzing the data, DeMeuse said about 44% of the responses came from parents; 29% came from citizens 35-45; 27% came from citizens ranging in age 65+; and 23% came from school district staff. About 56% of school district residents do not have children in the school, which oftentimes are the majority of voters, according to DeMeuse.

The WASD Board of Education plans to place a referendum question on the Dec. 12 Monthly Meeting Agenda detailing the option to build a new elementary school. If the referendum resolution is adopted by the Board, voters will have the opportunity to vote on the question at the ballot box on April 4, 2023.

The full survey results can be viewed by visiting,