USD 253 opens enrollment boundary change proposal to patrons

Close to 40 people attended meetings at William Allen White and Walnut schools Tuesday as the Emporia School District officially began soliciting opinions on proposed enrollment boundary changes for the district elementary schools.


The district is considering several boundary changes with enrollment trending towards the northwest -- towards Village and Timmerman schools -- and away from the other four elementary schools. Transportation Director Shelby Harvel says safety was another concern for the district.

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The district has eight changes planned:

*Green Acres would move from Village to Timmerman.
*Riverside would pick up the areas around Fourth and Rural and Fifth and Garfield. Village, Timmerman and Walnut would lose students with those changes.
*The area around Fourth and Union would move from Riverside to William Allen White.
*The Second and Union neighborhood would shift from Riverside to Logan Avenue, as would the Belmont trailer court area.
*Country Club Heights would move from Village to Walnut.

By making these changes, the district hopes to balance enrollment among its three biggest enrollment schools -- Timmerman, Village and Riverside -- at just over 400 students. The smaller enrollment schools, Logan Avenue, Walnut and William Allen White, would balance out at around 240. This would follow the general thought process when Timmerman and Riverside were built in 2003. William Allen White kindergarten teacher Marilyn Dalton says that's a good move.

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Proposed enrollment changes:

School                         Current         New

Logan Avenue                212                252
Riverside                       349                403
Timmerman                   438                408
Village                           484                415
Walnut                           268                247
William Allen White         211                237

The school board should field the district recommendation by March 12. Changes would go into effect for the upcoming fall if approved. The district plans to keep current transfer approval guidelines in place, and students impacted can stay in their current school if they so choose.

Riverside School will host a meeting at 5:30 pm Wednesday, with Timmerman, Logan Avenue and Village schools hosting meetings in early March.

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