The Research & Program Evaluation Office studied the hypothetical possibility of moving students from crowded schools to others in the district and took into account six considerations the School Board adopted in 2007 when evaluating boundary changes.
These considerations include reasonable bus routes, a rule to keep students from moving schools more than once in five years, grandfathering fourth and fifth grades, desirable school size, avoiding low-income concentrations and keeping neighborhoods intact.
The report studied the possibility of moving some students between schools: Sandburg to Mendota; Midvale and Van Hise to Thoreau; Hamilton to Cherokee; Hawthorne to Lowell; and Kennedy to Allis.
Each proposed boundary change except one, Hamilton to Cherokee, failed to live up to the six-consideration framework, leading researchers to conclude that future long-term facilities solutions will be “more comprehensive, less politically controversial and less challenging for MMSD students and families than changing school attendance boundaries,” according to the report.
The district is proposing $27 million in additions and renovations at several schools to address crowding and other issues. Over the next several weeks it plans to seek feedback from the public.
At its Monday meeting, the School Board briefly debated the merits of using boundary changes instead of renovations.