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Natrona County School District to sell or demolish 2 schools, keeps 4 vacant schools mothballed
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Natrona County School District to sell or demolish 2 schools, keeps 4 vacant schools mothballed

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Willard Elementary Last Day

Families trickle out of Willard Elementary as the school's final day comes to a close in June 2018 in Casper.

The Natrona County School District will sell or demolish two vacant elementary schools and will mothball four currently vacant facilities, the school board voted in a Monday meeting.

Willard and Willow Creek elementary schools will be sold or demolished as part of the district’s ongoing review of school facilities, trustee David Applegate said Monday.

“This is just part of the ongoing process of the board to manage these various school buildings,” he said.

Willard Elementary School closed in 2018 amid falling enrollment, and Willow Creek Elementary closed in 2016.

The schools had previously been mothballed, meaning they aren’t used by students but the district maintains the facilities in case enrollment increases and more space is needed.

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It’s unclear what the financial impact of selling the facilities would be for the district.

In 2019, the district sold the former North Casper Elementary School to the Casper Housing Authority for $150,000 after a previous bid for $200,000 from the American Legion fell through.

The district will also keep several schools in mothball status, including Mills’ Mountain View Elementary and University Park Elementary, which were both closed in 2018 as a cost-saving measure.

Westwood Elementary school, which has been closed since 2017, will also keep its mothball designation, as will Powder River Elementary, which the district identified for closure in 2017 as well.

None of the schools on the mothball list are occupied.

Applegate said districts are required to review their facilities every three years, which is why already vacant schools were on Monday’s agenda.

Follow health and education reporter Morgan Hughes on Twitter @m0rgan_hughes

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Health and education reporter

Morgan Hughes covers health and education in Wyoming. After growing up in rural Wisconsin, she graduated from Marquette University in 2018. She moved to Wyoming shortly after and covered education in Cheyenne before joining the Star-Tribune in May 2019.

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