Rejection.

For the first time in Sandy Coaly's tenure as superintendent at Grove Public Schools voters failed to pass a school bond.

On Tuesday, March 7, slightly more than 7 percent of the 11,155 registered voters in the GPS district made their opinions known.

While the measure received a majority of the 782 votes - 425 yes to 357 no; it failed to receive the needed 60 percent approval for passage.

In all 54.35 percent of those voting were in favor of the bond, while 45.65 voted against it.

If the measure had been approved, it would have given district officials $820,000 to upgrade the transportation fleet of buses, passenger cars, vans and suburbans.

As she watched the numbers trickle in from the nine precincts, Coaly expressed her sadness at the outcome.

"I'm horribly disappointed," Coaly said. "We'll be driving the same buses."

While district officials followed the same formula which brought success in 2013 for a transportation bond and 2015 for the Performing Arts Center, Coaly said it appeared the district needed to provide additional information to its voters.

"Could we have done anything different," Coaly questioned. "I followed the guide to a 'T'.

Maybe its because of the small tax increase. People never like tax increases.

"Many wanted it to pass, but it's hard to reach the 60 percent."

Coaly said she was disappointed in the election turnout.

"I thought more people would vote," Coaly said. "I don't think most people realize we need 60 percent for passage. It's a hard thing to get across to the public."

Coaly said district officials would assess the election's outcome and begin to plan for the future.

"Just because you lose one election, doesn't mean you give up," Coaly said. "I continue to want the best education and best transportation for students.

"I'm sure it will come up again. You can't give up because you don't pass one bond issue."