In 66 year history, MCC has only had 5 facility bonds. 

April 9, 2022

Construction of Mason County Central High School in 1959.

In 66 year history, MCC has only had 5 facility bonds. 

Spartan News is a presentation of Mason County Central Schools in partnership with Mason County Press. 

On Tuesday, April 12, voters in the Mason County Central School District will have an opportunity to learn about the upcoming May 3 bond proposal vote during a community forum at A.O. Carlson Gymnasium at the high school. The forum begins at 6:30 p.m. 

By Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief.

MCC High School 2022

SCOTTVILLE — Mason County Central School District has a history of conservatively updating its school facilities when the need arises. On May 3, voters in the district are being asked to decide on a 25-year 1.95 mill request that will raise $33.6 million for building and facility improvements. Major items include safety and security upgrades to each of the district buildings, the construction of an auditorium/performing arts center at the high school, repairs and updates to the high school’s B and C halls, including the library, new high school administrative offices, renovations of A.O. Carlson Gymnasium, campus road repairs, and athletic facility upgrades. 

In its 66-year history, Mason County Central has only made major infrastructure improvements, through bonds, five times, beginning with the passage of a 20-year $955,000 ($9,642,305 adjusted for inflation in 2022) bond proposal — approved on April 24, 1957 by a vote of 601-383 — that included the construction of a new high school, completed in 1959, and classroom expansions at Scottville Elementary and Victory Elementary, completed in fall of 1957. 

Mason County Central School District was formed in 1956, combining multiple rural school districts into a centralized district based in Scottville including Amber No. 6 (Scottville School District), Amber Township districts No. 1 (Jones),  No. 2 (Amber Station), No. 3 (Rickey), No. 5 (North Amber) (Read more about Amber Township schools here); Eden Township districts No. 1 (Marbel, district divided between MCC and Mason County Eastern), No. 2 (Major); Victory Township Unit; Grant Township districts No. 1 (Freeman), No. 2 fractional (Pelton); Custer districts No. 4 (Menninger), No. 7 (Wilson, closed in 1952); Riverton Township District No. 1 fractional (East Riverton); Branch District No. 7 (Walhalla); Sherman districts No. 1 (Elm Flats, closed in 1945 and split between MCC and MCE), No. 6 (Lincoln River, closed in 1951 and combined with Sugar Grove), No. 2 fractional (Sugar Grove); and Logan-Lake No. 2. Voters of Riverton Township No. 5, Fractional (St. Mary’s), voted to annex to MCC in 1959 and consolidated in 1966. Riverton Township School Unit District No. 2 consolidated with MCC in 1966 (read more about Riverton schools here. Read more about school consolidation in Mason County here.)

Except for the Scottville School District, the other districts only offered grades kindergarten through eighth grade (or lower). Scottville also offered grades nine through 12. Before the formation of MCC, students who did not live in the Scottville school district would pay tuition to attend the high school there (this was the same practice with other high school districts in the county as well). 

MCC Middle School, built in 1976

When MCC was formed, elementary and junior high students were scattered over the 229 square mile, three county district while high school students attended school in the school house on North Main Street, built in 1888. Busing students to multiple rural one/two-room schools became very inefficient quickly and the downtown school house became overcrowded. As a result of the 1957 bonds, students in grades 9 through 12 were moved into the new high school beginning mid-year in 1959 and the old high school was converted into a junior high (by the early 1970s it was being called a middle school), but it was still not capable of housing all upper elementary students. Many of those students were still being sent to some of the remaining rural schools until 1976 when the middle school was opened. 

Advocacy for a middle school began with a bond vote in 1971, which was turned down by the voters. It was turned down again in March 1973, 725-702 and again in October 1973 1,094-558. 

The $2.3 million ($13.2 million adjusted for inflation in 2022) bond proposal finally passed on May 7, 1974 812-737. One of the selling points to voters was that almost half of the costs were to be covered by funds provided by the state through the Bursley Bill. Voters also decided on the location of the new building. They were asked to decided between two spots, 49 acres of land owned by the Sorensen family located on Scottville’s southwest side, along the north-south portion of First Street (at a cost of $30,000) or 40 acres of land owned by the Andersen family located on the city’s northwest corner ($50,000). The voters decided on the Andersen land which strategically placed the middle school on land adjacent to the high school and paved the way for future development of Spartan Community Field (along with softball, baseball and soccer facilities) and the Upper Elementary. 

The 1974 bond also saw the addition of a gymnasium/lunchroom and library to Scottville Elementary. At that time, Scottville Elementary housed grades pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. Pre-K was taught in an old annex building located near the 1888 brick schoolhouse while first and second grades were taught in portable classrooms located on the building’s west side. The portable classrooms continued until they were replaced in 1993. The school district also house K-5 students at Victory Elementary (now Victory Early Childhood Center) and Riverton Elementary. 

Scottville Elementary, built in 1951, pre-MCC school district.

The next approved infrastructure bond occurred 18 years later, in 1992. The $1.2 million ($2.4 million adjusted for inflation in 2022) bond was defeated twice by voters within a year before passing on April 14, 1992. It included renovations at the high school including expansion of the band room, expanded science labs on the west side of C-Hall, and new classrooms on the east side of C-Hall, along with the addition of the west wing of Scottville Elementary, which moved the first and second graders into the main building (at this point all district fifth graders were being housed at the middle school, which continued until 2007). 

On June 9, 1997, an additional 2 mills bond of $3.9 million ($6.9 million adjusted for inflation in 2022) was requested that included the construction of Spartan Community Field for $1.7 million ($3 million adjusted for inflation in 2022), bringing all outdoor athletic facilities to the school campus. Prior to that, outdoor athletics were hosted at the city-owned McPhail Field. The bond also covered an additional science lab in the high school B-Hall. 

On March 24, 2003 voters were asked to approve a bond of $25.4 million that included adding multi-purpose rooms/gymnasiums to each of the district’s buildings including the high school, middle school, Scottville Elementary, Riverton Elementary and Victory Elementary. That proposal was defeated 802-256. A modified proposal was brought back to the voters on June 14, 2004. This time, voters were asked to consider a $19.8 million bond that would have built a new 105,000 square-foot high school and then convert Scottville Elementary into a lower elementary (grades K-2), the present middle school into an upper elementary (grades 3-5) and the existing high school into a middle school. The proposal also called for the closing of Victory and Riverton schools. Again, voters defeated that proposal 1,005 to 818. 

MCC Upper Elementary, built in 2006

On Feb. 28, 2006 voters finally approved $16.9 million 20 year bond, 973-930, that included the construction of the Upper Elementary, which would house grades three through five throughout the district. It also meant closing Victory and Riverton elementary schools with all K-2 students attending Scottville Elementary and pre-K students attending the newly created Victory Early Childhood Center. The bond included major construction at the high school, including a new gymnasium, additional classrooms, renovated cafeteria, a new Central Business Office, and conversion of A.O. Carlson Gymnasium to a multi-purpose facility. New offices were constructed at Scottville Elementary and the middle school, along with other building updates in both buildings. 

As with owning a home, buildings need to be updated over time. It’s been 16 years since the last bond was passed. Though the district has invested millions of dollars in updates utilizing non-bonded funds (including a new high school roof, high efficiency lighting systems, and the construction of a solar electric panels) it has reached a point where new investments must be made with the support of the district’s property owners. 

Victory Early Childhood Center, built as Victory Elementary School in 1956, pre-MCC.

On May 3, voters are being asked to decide on a $33 million bond that will include safety and security upgrades in each of the district’s five school buildings. These upgrades include limited access entrances along with traffic safety issues, especially near the upper elementary. The bond also includes renovations at the high school’s B and C halls, new administrative offices, updates to A.O. Carlson Gymnasium and construction of an auditorium/performing arts center. There are also several proposed updates to Spartan Community Field and addition of updated technology throughout the district.

 

 

 

Outline History of Current Mason County Central School Facilities 

Mason County Central School District was created in 1956. 

Scottville Elementary.

  • Opened in 1951 (following a March 13, 1950 vote that approved a $125,000 bond {$1.4 million in 2022} for 17 years. The bond also paid for improvements to the Main Street schoolhouse). 
  • Originally part of Scottville School District (also known as Amber Township No. 6). 
  • 1956, became part of Mason County Central School District.
  • 1957, addition of four classrooms (1957 bond).
  • 1975, addition of library and gym/lunch room.
  • 1992, west wing classrooms added, replacing portable classrooms; mechanical facility; storage and work room. 
  • 2006, administrative offices moved to center of building. 

Victory Early Childhood Center (Victory Elementary): 

  • Opened in 1956
  • Originally part of Victory Township Unit School District
  • 1956, joined MCC School District
  • 1957, addition of two classrooms (1957 bond).
  • 1966, consolidated with MCC School District
  • 2005, elementary closed.
  • 2006, becomes VECC

MCC High School

  • Opened in 1959 (1957 bond), eight classrooms, plus speciality rooms for typing, commercial, science, biology, arts and crafts, drafting, wood and metal, agriculture, homemaking, music, and library, plus administrative offices, cafeteria and gymnasium. 
  • 1992, expansion of band room, replacement of portable classrooms with four permanent classrooms in C-hall. 
  • 1998, addition of classrooms on east side of C-Hall; addition of classrooms in center of B-Hall; technology upgrades; replacement of portable classrooms.
  • 2006, new gymnasium/D-Hall built, A.O. Carlson Gym converted to multi-purpose space; addition of computer lab west of library; new Central Business Office built in former metal shop area.

MCC Middle School

– Opened in December, 1976

  • 2006, updates to administrative offices.
  • New lockers, carpet

Spartan Community Field

– Opened 1998

– New athletic fields including football, running track, field sports area, soccer, baseball, softball, locker rooms, restrooms.  

MCC Upper Elementary

– Opened in 2006

Possible auditorium configuration.

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