The Board of Education for the School District of Janesville approved a contract cost-of-living pay increase of 5.9%.

JANESVILLE — The School District of Janesville currently is considering an operational referendum and facilities referendum and is seeking public input on the plan.

The operational referendum would renew the $29 million referendum passed in 2020. The building referendum would seek a base amount of $169.5 million.

The operational referendum renewal would not increase tax rates, but the base plan facilities referendum would increase the debt service portion of the district’s tax rate by $102 annually per $100,000 of property value, according to the district. 

The district is distributing a community-wide survey to all district households seeking community feedback. Residents should expect to receive the survey via mail in late April. Community members are asked to complete the survey by May 20, 2024. 

The School District of Janesville operates 20 school facilities and maintains more than 2 million square feet of buildings. The average age of the buildings is 63 years, and they will require significant investment. A major challenge facing school districts such as the SDJ is the lack of predictable, sustainable funding. State aid has not kept up with increasing costs.

Given this situation, SDJ is planning to ask voters to consider renewing the 2020 operational referendum at the same rate ($14.5 million each year) for two years. These funds would be used to maintain current programs, services, and small class sizes. It would also pay for transportation, utilities, compensation, insurance, curriculum, technology, and special education services.

Because the SDJ has diligently paid down debt, renewing the operational referendum at $14.5 million would not increase the SDJ portion of the current property tax rate. 

Additionally, the district has an estimated $578 million in basic capital maintenance needs including improvement to electrical systems, plumbing, mechanical equipment, roofs, windows, and more. However, the district realizes addressing all these needs at once is unrealistic.

Rather, they must be addressed over time in phases. The district has prioritized $136.7 million in immediate capital maintenance needs. 

Two additional projects have been prioritized by the district: 

● Renovating Special Education classrooms for $19.0 million. 

● Enhancing Safety and Security for $13.8 million. 

Residents will be asked for their input on these three core needs, which make up a possible facilities Base Plan: 

Element Estimated Cost
High-Priority Capital Maintenance $136.7 million
Special Education Renovations $19.0 million
Safety & Security Enhancements $13.8 million
Total Base Plan $169.5 million

The district is also seeking resident feedback on additional facilities investments to supplement the Base Plan: 

● Renovate Career and Technical Education classrooms at Parker and Craig High Schools ($32 million). 

● Renovate classrooms at each of the elementary schools ($36 million). ● Renovate at city-owned Monterey Park or invest in school site-based athletic facilities at Parker and Craig High Schools ($23 million). 

“Our Board and administration have thought long and hard about the facilities and operational needs facing the district,” said Superintendent Mark Holzman. “We have invested significant time in identifying our highest priority needs. We must have community input which we will be gathering through this survey. Resident input will help guide our next steps.” 

The survey households will receive has a unique code (that can be used only once) that must be entered to complete/submit (if completing the survey online). To obtain additional surveys for other adults in the household, you may contact the District office at 608-743-5000, or submit a request via email at 

For more information about facilities or operational planning, please visit the School District of Janesville’s website at