Next Steps for Capacity Issues 

The failure of the recent Bond Issue to build two 550-student elementary schools, with modernizing and adding capacity to West Valley Junior High School, as well as the fact that West Valley School District has only approved three bond issues in the past 27 years has given cause to re-evaluate placement of students throughout the West Valley School District as we move ahead. 

We advertised that we are facing a severe capacity/student housing issue and I would like to share the facts.

 

The housing development at 64th and Ahtanum is going to be partially completed in time for fall school enrollment. There are 5 housing units in the first phase, and 50 units planned to follow in the spring. Social scientists use a figure of 1.2 school-age students/housing unit for the purpose of projecting growth. We are planning with these figures: 6-10 new students in phase 1, and 60 new students in phase 2. Beyond this, two housing projects have recently been approved in the Apple Valley attendance area for immediate development.

 

Combined with the 330 unit approval on Wide Hollow between 83rd and 88th, as well as the 600+ unit approval at 64th and Occidental, and other pockets of new construction going on, we have a lot of student capacity planning to take into consideration. With this in mind, we worked extensively last Thursday and Friday through the process of modifying the Elementary Attendance Area Boundaries to move students to the south and west in our district. The next school for accommodating growth after Ahtanum, Mountainview, and Cottonwood will be Wide Hollow.

 

If we make the decision to modify Elementary Attendance Area Boundaries, all affected families will soon be notified of changes of school placement for the start of the 2017-18 school year. Because all of our decisions are based on space available, we are eliminating the Inter District Boundary Application process. It does no good to make calculated decisions on space available, and then make exclusions to the process.  For example, PAL is an exclusion to the process.

 

Program Considerations:

 

Elementary Attendance Area Revisions may require program considerations of the following:

Special Needs Preschool – EPIC – Headstart – DLC Classrooms – PAL Program

There are considerations regarding these programs that are critical to the Elementary Attendance Area decisions. For example, we have to move the Special Needs Preschool from Ahtanum in order to have the room to move students to Athanum. EPIC and Headstart have been notified of the premium on classroom space and the necessity for them to be prepared to relocate. DLC classrooms, ideally spread to all schools, would have to best locate where we have space available, avoiding Apple Valley and Summitview. 

 

Proposed Decision-Making Timeline:

 

Monday, March 27, 2017    

School Board Meeting
7:00 p.m. WVHS Library

Discussion Item on Capacity Timeline Process Decision-Making Timeline Adopted.

 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

School Board Community Forum
6:00 p.m. WVHS Library
 Opportunity for Community Input on Elementary Attendance Area Boundary Revisions and Program Considerations

 

Monday, April 17, 2017      

School Board Community Forum
6:00 p.m. WVHS Library
 Opportunity for Community Input on Elementary Attendance Area Boundary Revisions and Program Considerations

 

Monday, April 24, 2017      

School Board Study Session
6:00 p.m. before School Board Meeting at 7:00 p.m. WVHS Library

Study Session Opportunity for Community Input before Decisions/Action Item during Board Meeting.

 

As you can see, this is a process that we will be going through in order to develop a plan that will best meet the needs of our school community. Your participation in this process would be appreciated.

 

Mike Brophy

Posted by FieldGroup On 30 March, 2017 at 9:39 AM