Bottineau voters said "no" to a $12.96 million bond issue on Tuesday.
There were 374 "yes" votes and 270 "no" votes. The vote required 60 percent or greater approval to pass and just 58 percent voters were in favor.
"We were 13 votes short of it passing," said superintendent Jason Kersten.
The bond issue would have paid for new school construction and renovation. Kersten said, if it had passed, the bond issue would have enabled the district to house grades K-12 under one roof, to renovate school science labs, add a multipurpose room and lunch facilities. Currently, preschoolers through second graders attend school in another building.
In November, voters defeated a more elaborate, $18.9 million bond issue, that would have paid for construction of a new elementary school building.
Kersten said the school board has not yet discussed what to do next to address the district's space issues. Like other school districts in the area, Bottineau has seen an increase in student numbers, particularly at the elementary level. Kersten said kids will continue to attend school in two separate buildings for the time being.
The first day of school in Bottineau is Aug. 27.