Addressing Overcrowding in Rochester Area Schools

March 07, 2018 05:58 PM

(ABC 6 NEWS) -- “We stayed in this neighborhood deliberately because it is so convenient. We are 5 houses up from the school,” said Cindy Ward.

Ward has two grandchildren enrolled at Elton Hills Elementary School. Given the proximity of her home, she doesn't believe potential boundary changes will impact her family. However … “My little grandson that is in 5th grade has a best friend - they have been best friends since kindergarten - he lives in Elton Hills Drive on the other side. So he could very well be impacted by this. That would be hard on them.”


Overcrowding is an issue for four elementary schools in Rochester, including Elton Hills. 

To address the problem, school boundaries were discussed at Tuesday night's School Board Meeting. The two proposed changes were unanimously voted down.

“It didn't necessarily accomplish what we desired,” said Don Barlow, the Vice Chair of the Board. 

A third option; to make no changes, was also voted against.

“That would have resulted in having overcrowding situations to continue to occur at Gibbs and Elton Hills,” said Barlow.

A work session scheduled for next week will look at different solutions specifically for those two schools.

“Something will be done for the 2018-19 school year,” said Barlow. “That will be presented at our next regularly scheduled School Board Meeting on the 20th of March.”

Barlow says they will provide as much information, guidance and support as possible to parents and guardians. “We are hoping that this is a tenable, workable solution that benefits the entire district.”

“Hopefully it is not going to affect me,” said Ward. “But I understand where they are coming from.”


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