DATE: August 27, 2012
CONTACT: Phil Giaramita, Public Affairs and Strategic Communications Officer
Redistricting Committee for Albemarle County Public Schools Will Look at
Options for Agnor-Hurt, Western Feeder Pattern Elementary Schools
(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia) – For the second year in a row, the Albemarle County School Board has directed that a Redistricting Advisory Committee be appointed to address capacity issues at multiple county elementary schools. The Board voted at its August 23 meeting to direct Superintendent Pam Moran to appoint the committee, which will review enrollment numbers and projections as well as available capacity at Agnor-Hurt Elementary School and among elementary schools in the division’s western feeder pattern.
According to a July report by the Long-Range Planning Advisory Committee, Agnor-Hurt is more than 100 students over capacity this year, and the school’s enrollment is projected to continue to grow over the next five years. The four elementary schools in the western feeder pattern, Brownsville, Crozet, Meriwether Lewis and Murray, are at 90 percent of their total capacity and are located in a county-designated growth area, so enrollments are expected to approach and possibly exceed available classroom seats over the next few years.
The Redistricting Advisory Committee, following the model of the committee that looked at Hollymead and Stony Point Elementary Schools in 2011, will include representatives from the communities likely to be affected. One subcommittee will review Agnor-Hurt’s needs and include members of the Agnor-Hurt, Broadus Wood and Greer school communities, since either or both of the latter two schools could be designated locations for students who are reassigned from Agnor-Hurt.
A second subcommittee will include members of the Brownsville, Crozet, Meriwether Lewis, Murray and Red Hill school communities. Among options that will be considered by this subcommittee are reassignment of students and possible additions to existing schools.
The redistricting committee also will include representatives from the Long-Range Planning Advisory Committee and an equity and diversity representative. The committee will work with school staff in analyzing enrollment data, growth projections, costs, bus routes, student diversity, and impact upon students and their families in offering options to the Superintendent. All committee meetings will be open to the public, and public hearings will be held on the committee’s proposed recommendations to the Superintendent. Minutes of all meetings will be posted on the school division’s website.
Once Superintendent Moran has reviewed the redistricting committee’s recommendations, she will make a formal recommendation to the School Board. The School Board also will conduct a public hearing prior to making a decision. It is expected that options will be finalized during the current school year, and the earliest that changes would be made to school attendance zones will be August 2013.
“We are pleased that the transition has gone so well for the more than 100 Hollymead students and families who moved over to Baker-Butler,” said Josh Davis, the chief operating officer for Albemarle County Public Schools. “Credit for this begins with the community representatives on the Redistricting Advisory Committee, whose research, hard work and careful deliberations were so valuable. I look forward to working with community members who will be involved in the new committee who will help us to ensure that all students will have the very best opportunities for learning,” Davis added.
Another key to the successful transition this year, Davis said, were the outreach efforts by Baker-Butler administrators, teachers and staff over the summer, and the support of parents from both Hollymead and Baker-Butler. “These outstanding teams have given us another model to follow for the future,” Davis added.