Referendum Information

For more than 130 years, Lemont High School has served as the pride of our community, with a tradition of excellence that has helped generations of students become life-long, independent learners and productive citizens.

Our community is committed to working together as a family, which has made Lemont High School one of the top high schools in the state, as well as a 2017 National Blue Ribbon School. In fact, we are first among South Suburban Conference schools in graduation rate and average composite SAT, have earned an “exemplary” rating from the Illinois State Board of Education for four straight years, are one of only three high schools in the country to house a CITGO Innovation Academy, and have won the South Suburban Conference President’s Cup as the league’s top athletic program 11 of the past 16 years.

No wonder so many of our graduates return home to start their families and careers!

We accomplish all this despite receiving less state and federal funding than most other south suburban districts. We make the most of our available funding, utilizing conservative budgeting practices to ensure we are using taxpayer money as efficiently and effectively as possible. We’ve held staffing steady for the past decade, ensured a balanced budget and responsible fund balances, and prioritized maintaining what we have over buying new.

This has led to our district having the lowest tax rate in Cook County and the second lowest tax rate in DuPage County compared to all other high school districts. Lemont taxpayers pay among the lowest taxes for their K-12 schools, with the second lowest combined tax rate in all of Cook County and the fourth lowest combined tax rate in all of DuPage County.

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Our Challenges

Many of our once state-of-the-art facilities are outdated and in need of renovation.

Most of our classrooms and lab spaces are not designed for today’s curriculum. Some of our most frequently used athletic facilities have not been updated since the 1990s, and it shows. Our infrastructure, mechanicals, and furniture are aging.

Our students eat in what originally was a locker room, the 25-year-old floor in our field house is cracked and must be replaced, and some of our mechanical systems are so old they disrupt our students’ learning environment.

We maintain our facilities well, but with our infrastructure aging, we’ve reached a point where we are having to make the difficult choice between addressing immediate facility needs and improving educational environments for our students.

Our kids deserve better.If we are going to continue the tradition of excellence our community expects, Lemont High School needs improved facilities like those enjoyed by students in many of our surrounding districts.

Community Informed Facility Improvement Plan

We recently surveyed our community to identify a plan to improve our facilities, and our residents indicated they are ready to move forward. To implement this consensus plan, a referendum will appear on our ballots in the upcoming November 8, 2022, election to increase the district’s debt service extension base to $5 million.

Once implemented, this would not increase the annual debt service burden for taxpayers while allowing the district to:

  • Sustainably and Responsibly Address Our Facility Needs
  • Modernize Our School Infrastructure
  • Improve Learning Environments for All Students
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What the Facility Improvement Plan Will Do

The plan will allow our district to address our facility needs now and into the future in a sustainable and responsible way. Funding our needed infrastructure improvements through a debt service extension base increase instead of traditional bonds leads to two key advantages for the district and taxpayers.

First, this is a long-term funding source, providing a sustainable solution to the district’s immediate and ongoing infrastructure needs.

Second, these bonds can be issued when funds are needed for specific projects rather than all at once, resulting in significant interest cost savings for taxpayers. What’s more, once the district completes paying off bonds that taxpayers previously approved, this debt service extension base increase will not result in an increase in the tax levy for bond debt.

The plan will lead to more modern infrastructure that meets our community’s expectation for excellence. The district will be able to address immediate infrastructure and mechanical needs throughout our aging school building, including roofs, electrical, plumbing, air conditioning, chillers, flooring, and paving.

We will also be able to address larger capital needs, returning to the state-of-the-art facilities our students, teachers, and community expect.

The plan will also provide improved learning environments for all our students. We will be able to renovate our labs and dedicated music spaces, update science classrooms, and expand STEM spaces to optimize hands-on learning in science, technology, engineering, and math.

All our students will be able to learn in updated classrooms and 21st century learning spaces with modern features and collaborative furniture. We will also be able to vastly improve career learning spaces for culinary arts, woodworking and carpentry, robotics, computer-assisted drafting, computer repair and networking, cybersecurity, coding, and graphic design to better prepare students for the world of work.

A Win for Our Community

Our students achieve high levels of excellence in aging facilities not designed for today’s education. Imagine what they could accomplish in modern facilities!

This sustainable plan is a win for our entire community. Once implemented, this plan:

  • Will not increase the annual debt service burden for taxpayers
  • Improves educational environments for all our students
  • Can help increase property values for homeowners