SCHUYLER - The first step of Schuyler Community Schools' 2019 bond issue is now complete.

School officials and community members celebrated the completion of a brand new gym, cafeteria, and other amenities at Schuyler Central High School on Tuesday. Schuyler Superintendent Dr. Dan Hoesing says the new facilities are investments in the students of Schuyler.

"We talk a lot about Schuyler pride, and sometimes facilities help kids realize what people think of them and how they support them," Dr. Hoesing said. "While facilities don't make teams, facilities make it possible for kids to think differently about themselves and who they represent."

"Whether this facility by itself can do it or all of the things we have to offer in Schuyler play a little part in that, this is a demonstration of how proud our community is of our kids today," Dr. Hoesing said. 

The new facilities are the result of a $12.5 million bond referendum that was passed by the community last spring, a bond that Dr. Hoesing initially had reservations about.

"I always swore that I would never run a bond that divided a community, no matter what we do our job is to pull people together to work," Dr. Hoesing said. "At the start, I was nervous about this bond issue, and when you run a bond you always run the risk of separating people, so even after the bond we spent a lot of time with the 'no' voters and asked what we could do to bring them on-board with this project."

Step one of the bond is now complete, and construction will soon begin on revamping the high school's east gym into an event center for performing arts, music, and dance. That portion of the project is expected to be completed by August of 2021.