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Schools

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If you go
What: Informational meetings about Southwest Allen County Schools redistricting plans. The public is invited to attend any or all of the meetings.
When: 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the following days at each school:
•Tuesday– Aboite Elementary
•Wednesday– Haverhill Elementary
•Thursday– Covington Elementary
•Oct. 7 – Deer Ridge Elementary
•Oct. 8 – Lafayette Meadows Elementary
•Oct. 9 – Whispering Meadows Elementary

SACS solicits parent support

Numbers force redistrict plan

Before finalizing plans to balance enrollment numbers at the district’s elementary schools, Southwest Allen County Schools leaders plan to meet with parents to discuss the proposed changes.

“Last year toward the end of the year, it was obvious that we saw some things happening. We took a good hard look at what our numbers were and decided we needed to have this conversation,” Associate Superintendent Philip Downs said.

The majority of the district’s elementary schools are at 83 percent to 85 percent capacity. Covington Elementary School is at 91 percent capacity, while Deer Ridge Elementary School is at 73.2 percent capacity, Downs said.

The redistricting proposal would move students in the Chestnut Hills Subdivision, off Illinois Road, from Covington Elementary School to Deer Ridge Elementary school beginning in the fall 2014.

The proposed changes would affect about 77 students.

Next year’s fifth-grade students from Chestnut Hills could opt to finish their final elementary school year at Covington, Downs said.

However, their younger siblings would be required to shift to Deer Ridge.

“Anytime you’re asking people to shift where their kids are going to school, there’s going to be some concerns,” Downs said.

The proposed changes would bring Covington’s capacity to 82.1 percent and Deer Ridge to 88.6 percent capacity.

The district’s other four elementary schools – Aboite, Haverhill, Lafayette Meadows and Whispering Meadows elementary schools – would not be affected.

The district’s middle schools also would not be affected because Covington and Deer Ridge elementary schools both feed into Woodside Middle School, Downs said.

The informational meetings begin Tuesday at Aboite Elementary and will be from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

The final meeting will be at Whispering Meadows Elementary Oct. 9.

Downs said the district would like to have plans finalized by March, giving schools and parents plenty of time to adjust to the change before the 2014-15 school year begins.

jcrothers@jg.net

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