The Mead School Board voted to approve new school attendance boundaries in a meeting Monday night, giving the green light to a plan proposed during a special board meeting in December.
“Now we have new boundaries,” said Jared Hoadley, the assistant superintendent of student services. “The Dec. 18 proposal was passed with no adjustments.”
The district is building two new schools, Creekside Elementary and Highland Middle School. The elementary is set to be complete in fall 2020, and the middle school is expected to be finished by fall 2021. The school board also recently approved the construction of a 10th elementary school in the Five Mile area. All those changes meant the district had to change the existing attendance boundaries.
A Boundary Review Committee made up of community members from throughout the district, and district employees met to discuss the new boundaries over a year. A public forum was held at each elementary school last fall to get input from the public on the original proposed boundary changes. More than 160 people submitted responses online.
During its December meeting, the school board made some changes to the plan proposed by the Boundary Review Committee in November. They voted to allow students in the Forest Creek Apartments to remain on the Farwell/Northwood/Mead High School track instead of moving them to the new Creekside/Mountainside/Mt. Spokane High School track.
The board voted to move 64 students in the North Midway area to Meadow Ridge Elementary instead of Colbert Elementary. They decided to let students living in the Blue Point Apartments stay at Meadow Ridge instead of moving them to Creekside Elementary.
There also was some discussion at the December meeting about students at Northwood Middle School being split between the district’s two high schools and concerns parents were raising about the issue. Ultimately, however, the school board did not change that recommendation.
The one issue the board did not decide at Monday’s meeting is the question of grandfathering, Hoadley said. Numerous parents had asked if their children could remain where they are and not have the new attendance boundaries apply to existing students. In particular, parents had asked that their seventh-graders currently attending Mountainside Middle School be allowed to finish the eighth grade there instead of moving to Northwood for their final year of middle school.
“The board said they would like to see what they can do, but they didn’t vote on anything,” Hoadley said.
In the end, 289 elementary students are set to change schools because of the new attendance boundaries. That includes 64 students moving from Midway to Meadow Ridge, 103 students shifting from Meadow Ridge to Creekside and 122 students changing from Shiloh Hills to Creekside.
Students from Brentwood, Farwell and Midway elementary schools will attend Northwood Middle School while students from Colbert, Meadow Ridge, Shiloh Hills and Creekside elementary schools will go to Mountainside Middle School. The new Highland Middle School will pull students from Prairie View and Evergreen elementary schools in addition to the as yet unnamed 10th elementary school.
Students from Highland Middle School plus students in the Farwell and Brentwood elementary schools attendance areas will attend Mead High School. Students from Mountainside Middle School and those in the Midway Elementary School attendance area will go to Mt. Spokane High School.
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