- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Voters in Lockwood and East Helena have approved bonds to build new high schools.

About 63 percent of voters in Lockwood approved a $49.5 million bond to build a new high school that would open in 2021 with a capacity of 700 students.

In East Helena, 61 percent of voters approved a $29.5 million bond to build a 600-student high school slated to open in 2020.

A law passed by the legislature last year allowed elementary school districts with at least 1,000 students to ask voters if they wanted to expand to a high school district. Voters passed the expansion measures in November, setting the stage for Tuesday’s bond elections.

Officials in both school districts said they would gradually transition students to the new high schools, lessening the impact in Billings and Helena.

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