Changes to Elementary Attendance Zones Approved
At their April 30, 2012 meeting, the Board of Education approved a plan to alter the elementary attendance zones beginning in the 2013-2014 school year. The map that was presented to the board came about from the efforts of the Long Range Planning Committee - a group of more than 60 parents and patrons charged with the task of proposing new attendance zones for all BAPS elementary schools.
The Long Range Planning Committee was presented with volumes of information, maps, and demographic data and after months of planning, each group created a map for discussion and debate amongst the other members of the committee. Those options were combined and reduced to three final plans which were presented to the public for comment in early April.
Two community forums were held for the purpose of gathering citizens’ input on three plans. After the forums, the Long Range Planning Committee met one more time to discuss and finalize a plan, which was then presented to the board on April 30.
“This has not been an easy task for the committee, but in going through all the data, they have arrived at very logical plan,” Mendenhall said. “They had a lot of tough conversations and even spent a great deal of time driving the district to get a better idea of what our parents and students would experience in their daily commute to school.”
In considering the attendance zones, the group had a number of things to take into consideration. For example, with the passage of the bond issue, three new elementaries will be constructed, and Arrow Springs will be transformed into an Early Childhood Development Center. New housing additions and apartment complexes will increase enrollment in some areas, and the demographic data indicates the eastern side of the district has the capacity for tremendous growth in student enrollment.
“I have been very impressed with not only the dedication shown by these parents, but also their willingness to be open to all ideas and options,” said Dr. Jarod Mendenhall. “They put the interests of all students above their personal preferences, and I am quite comfortable with the result - Map #5. Now that we have a final plan, we will begin communicating with parents to let them know how they will be affected by this change.”
The new attendance boundaries which were approved only affect the elementary schools in the district, and the changes will not go into effect until the 2013-2014 school year.