Two more southern Minn. school districts to mergeby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Two more school districts in southern Minnesota will merge after this school year.
Voters in the Tracy and Balaton School Districts in southwestern Minnesota overwhelmingly approved a consolidation of the two districts on Tuesday. The vote passed 473-31 in the Tracy district and 179-46 in Balaton.
Balaton was already sending its middle and high schoolers to Tracy, so the move will only add a few dozen K-6th graders. Those students will move to the school in Tracy, though the district plans to keep the Balaton building open with the hopes of finding tenants to occupy it.
Tracy Superintendent Dave Marlette says it was getting harder for Balaton to stay afloat financially because of declining enrollment.
"We have such a good relationship with Balaton and we see this continuing with this consolidation, and we're just excited that they're coming over to join in this new district," Marlette said.
This is the third marriage of school districts that will take place after this year. Ortonville and Bellingham will merge; and the McLeod West School District will be split among its three neighbors. All three were for financial reasons.