Update on Redistricting Western Albemarle Schools

via the RealCrozetVA facebook page

Huge thanks to Kelly for the post. A timeline and meeting dates for the Western Feeder pattern redistricting process is at Albemarle County’s site. Next meeting is 27 November 2012 at Murray Elementary. (bolding that follows is mine)

Good morning, Crozet friends! I’m sorry this update is late in getting posted, but I wanted to provide you with an overview of Tuesday night’s meeting of the Western Feeder Pattern Redistricting Committee.

The committee met at Crozet Elementary school. This is the first meeting where the committee has been able to examine the 10-year enrollment projection figures that have been certified and updated by the State. In a nutshell, growth is expected to continue at both Brownsville and Crozet Elementary Schools. Brownsville is projected to exceed its capacity by the 2014-15 school year; Crozet by 2015-16.

Although Meriwether Lewis school is operating currently above capacity, their enrollments are projected to remain relatively steady, hovering around 440-450. Murray is expected to remain steady at around 270 students. Currently, Murray is operating significantly under capacity, which is why it is a candidate to receive students in a redistricting.

It’s important to note that “overcapacity” is not necessarily the same thing as “overcrowded”. Capacity is a figure derived from a rather complex formula, as well as input from individual schools, and is generally meant to “accurately reflect how buildings are staffed and utilized best to promote student learning”. Capacities are also impacted by a school’s level of “differential staffing” and free and reduced lunch participants, to help that school adequate meet the needs of a diverse student population.

But back to Tuesday’s meeting. The committee has chosen to examine a number of options to attempt to address the overcapacity status at Meriwether Lewis (MLS). I’ll use bullet points to list these options:

-A “holding pattern” option: no students would be redistricted for the 2013-14 school year, but enrollments would continue to be monitored over the next 2 years. A possible redistricting could then be implemented if MLS continues to experience overcapacity. (This is by far the most popular option with MLS families, but as I mentioned above, Brownsville is projected to reach its own capacity problem within 2 years, so there is some thought that this option might amplify any coming issues).

-Movement of a number of children along the Brown’s Gap Turnpike area to Crozet Elementary. (This group of families was affected in the 2007 redistricting from Crozet to MLS).

-Movement of children from the West Leigh neighborhood from MLS to Murray Elementary..

-Movement of children living in the Owensville-Kimbrough area from MLS to Murray.

-Movement of the Glenaire neighborhood from MLS to Murray (this would impact only about 8 students, so would likely be done in combination with one of the above options).

The committee will be analyzing all of these options, and examining issues such as staffing changes at the affected schools, transportation safety and bus ride times, ease of transition for affected students, and much more.

The next meeting of the committee will be on Tuesday, November 27 at Murray elementary at 6:30 p.m. The meeting is open to the public, but public comments will not be taken.

The committee will then hold a public comment meeting at MLS on Tuesday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. All are invited and encouraged to attend!

If you have any other questions, or concerns that you’d like to share with the committee, please feel free to share them with me.

Sorry for the long post, but this is an important topic for all of us living in the growth area!!

—-

Post from 2008 about the redistricting then of Brownsville and Crozet.

Meriwether Lewis has a very informative blog about this process; do any of the other elementary schools have anything similar?

Update: there is a new Facebook page dedicated to tracking the changes and proposed changes in Western Albemarle schools

– Update 2: Josh Davis will be visiting the Crozet PTO on 4 December … via the Western Albemarle Redistricting Facebook page.

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3 Replies to “Update on Redistricting Western Albemarle Schools”

  1. Thank you so much for such a thorough yet concise update.forgive me as I have no knowledge of what information can be accurately obtained in these processes but out would be beneficial IMO, to balance income levels add much as possible when considering redistricting.when Crozet and Brownsville were redistricted, Crozet lost a big chunk of families that contributed PTO support, both financially and through volunteer hours , which is such a life blood to a school. Not sure if income areas can or should be considered, though. Also,I have major concerns about morgantown road/250 intercections.without improvements, more traffic is risky.

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