Committee decides on school redistricting plan

June 12, 2007|By ERIN CUNNINGHAM

A committee drafting a redistricting plan for Washington County Public Schools decided Tuesday on the attendance zone changes it will recommend to the Board of Education.

The proposal is expected to be given to the board by July 16.

Assistant Superintendent for School Operations Boyd Michael said the committee made decisions that will help ease overcrowding at many of the county's schools, most notably Paramount Elementary School, which could lose 201 students to Maugansville Elementary.

Redistricting is necessary to ease overcrowding at some schools and fill a new Rockland Woods Elementary opening in 2008 in the Westfields housing development, officials have said. Larger replacement schools for Maugansville and Pangborn elementary schools also will open that year.

The committee held four public forums and has gathered public comment for months before reaching consensus on the proposed changes. The majority of the changes the committee decided on Tuesday have been discussed publicly.


Most of the motions reached unanimous consensus. A discussion about the northern boundary of Rockland Woods Elementary drew the most divided vote.

The committee cast a 6-4 vote in favor of moving 13 Fountain Rock Elementary students to Rockland Woods. That move would establish a partial boundary for Rockland Woods that would include all areas of the current Fountain Rock district north of the intersection of Carty Lane and Downsville Pike.

Darin Lewis and Erin Lee and committee co-chairs Leslie LeBlanc and Adam Lewis voted against that decision.

Lee also was against the decision to move 201 students from Paramount to Maugansville.

Adam Lewis and Darin Lewis also were against moving 28 E. Russell Hicks students and 64 South Hagerstown High students to Springfield Middle and Williamsport High, respectively, to ease overcrowding at E. Russell Hicks. Eight committee members were in favor of making that recommendation to the board.

This change would enlarge the Springfield Middle and Williamsport High boundaries to include all current Lincolnshire Elementary boundaries and other newly proposed boundary changes for that school.

This change is the only one proposed by the committee that affects what middle or high school students will attend, Michael said.

Darin Lewis said the committee previously told parents there would be no change to those secondary feeder patterns.

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