Superintendent John Allison calls it “the first step in a difficult journey.” Monday night, the Wichita School Board discussed the process of changing the boundaries for Wichita students.
“We want parents to be part of that process,” says Allison.
That’s why the district will hold its first public hearing on the issue. The meeting will be on Wednesday, September 28th, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at Southeast High School, 903 S. Edgemoor, to let people to learn more about the school boundary change process. Attendees will have an opportunity to provide feedback.
Allison wants to make it clear that no decisions have been made and parents will not see any proposed changes at the meeting.
The boundary changes come as part of the $370 million bond issue plan. Five new schools are scheduled to open in the fall of 2012: a new high school in the northeast area of the district, a northeast and southeast K-8 school, the new Ortiz Elementary in north Wichita and the new Lewis and South Elementary. With the opening of the new buildings, school boundaries will have to be changed and developed, along with the addition of a new high school feeder pattern.
Budget cuts at the state level have delayed the boundary change process. The district still isn’t sure what it’s going to do with the new schools. It’s still a possibility the new schools won’t open as scheduled.
“You would like the original plan to move forward, but the economics and the cuts over the last several years by the state have put us in the corner on having to re-evaluate that plan,” says Allison.