Douglas County schools OK new building for CESA 12

The Cooperative Educational Service Agency serves 17 area school districts, providing specialists ranging from audiologists and occupational therapists to directors of special education.

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SUPERIOR — Three Douglas County school districts have thrown their support behind a new building project for CESA 12, a cooperative educational service agency housed in Ashland that serves 17 area school districts.

The district seeks to be reimbursed for costs caused by a fire that delayed Cooper Elementary School's opening by a year.

The agency, which is owned by the districts it serves, provides professional development and itinerant services that range from therapists, audiologists and school psychologists to directors of special education.

On July 11, both the Superior and Maple school boards unanimously approved a resolution to purchase an existing 5,700 square foot building near CESA 12’s faciilty and sell the current building. The Solon Springs School Board approved the resolution a week later.

If 13 of the 17 districts approve the resolution, the sale will move forward. The majority of districts in the cooperative will be meeting the last two weeks of July, according to agency administrator Nick Madison.

Each of the 17 districts will pay an equal share of the $450,000 cost of the new building — about $26,500 per district — instead of paying a percentage based on the number of pupils in the district. The smaller districts in the cooperative pushed for equal payments at the board of control meeting, according to Maple School Board member Jeremiah Glonek, who serves on the board of control. Even though the smaller districts will be paying a larger percentage of their budget for the move, he said, they also utilize more of the agency’s resources than larger districts.


CESA 12 is currently housed in two old school buildings, one that was built in 1899 and one that was built in 1954. The facility does not meet current needs, and the agency has been looking at options ranging from renovating the current buildings to demolishing the current facilities and building new. The most cost effective option, and the one approved by the board of control, was the purchase of an existing 30-year-old building at a site nearby.

Visit the CESA 12 website to learn more about the cooperative and the services it provides.

Maria Lockwood covers news in Douglas County, Wisconsin, for the Superior Telegram.
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