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More questions raised about redistricting of some Washington County Public Schools

May 22, 2007|by ERIN CUNNINGHAM

HAGERSTOWN - Their home is just outside what was the proposed boundary for a new elementary school in the Westfields development south of Hagerstown.

Rodney Burgan and his wife, Kristy, said they were pleased that their children would continue to go to Fountain Rock Elementary. But during a meeting in early May, the boundary for the new Rockland Woods Elementary expanded west, and their home was included.

"We don't want to be included in the new area," Kristy Burgan said.

The Burgans were among about 60 parents and community members at a public meeting Monday night at South Hagerstown High School to address redistricting of some Washington County Public Schools. Officials have said redistricting is necessary to fill Rockland Woods Elementary and also relieve overcrowding at several other schools. The new school will open in 2008, along with replacement schools for Pangborn and Maugansville elementary schools.

New proposed school districts for Rockland Woods, Lincolnshire, Bester and Emma K. Doub elementary schools were discussed Monday. Officials also suggested moving some students from the E. Russell Hicks Middle School and South Hagerstown High School attendance zone to Springfield Middle School and Williamsport High School.

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Rodney Burgan said he will need to drive past Fountain Rock, where he has a first-grader, in order to get to Rockland Woods. He and his wife proposed that officials not include the area south of Md. 68 in the attendance zone for Rockland Woods.

Scott Olson, and his wife Lorraine, have two children at Greenbrier Elementary and said their home is included in the proposed Rockland Woods attendance area. They said they had questions about where their children would go for middle and high school, and also about the bus route they would take to the new school.

"I don't want my kids on the highway," Scott Olson said.

Some parents said they were concerned about a plan to limit enrollment at Funkstown Elementary School only to prekindergarten and kindergarten. Those parents said young children starting school for the first time shouldn't go to a school for only one or two years, only to be moved again for first grade.




If you go



What: Public meeting for those affected by or interested in proposed redistricting of Conococheague, Maugansville and Paramount elementary schools

When: May 29, 6:30 p.m.

Where: North Hagerstown High School

For information: go to www.wcboe.k12.md.us, e-mail redistricting@wcboe.k12.md.us or call 301-766-2862.

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