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INDIANAPOLIS — A while back, IPS Supt. Alessia Johnson announced the formation of an initiative to retool the school district for the future.

It’s called IPS Rebuilding Stronger, which includes reorganizing the district and thus closing some schools in the process. Many in the community have been pushing back on the plan saying that closing schools would be detrimental to many students of color.

Now, the district has a proposal on how to fund the plan. They want Marion County voters to approve two referendums that would raise roughly $500 million between them through a slight tax increase.

One of the proposed referendums would raise $410 million for capital improvements. The other would raise another $50 million for operating costs “to ensure educational opportunities.” In all, taxpayers would be paying roughly $6 more in property taxes.

“We will be a district that is excellent because it is equitable,” said Johnson in a prepared statement. “We will be a district where every student can access a future of their choosing. But that vision can only be possible with these referendums. We need your support this spring to build the IPS that every student and family deserves.”

The plan going forward is to have more hearings about the proposals in mid-November. A final decision on whether to place the referenda on the ballot would come in December. If approved they would be voted on during the 2023 municipal elections.