People get emotional about their schools. And when circumstances force a family to change schools, it can be a matter of pride.
The additions of a new elementary school and middle school to the Rochester School District will mean redrawing the lines. To help smooth the process, the district brought in Cooperative Strategies LLC of Dublin, Ohio. One of their first courses of action was to create an online survey that would help set the "guiding principles" for the project.
The School Board will review the survey results during its Dec. 15 meeting.
"Attendance boundary adjustments are one of the most challenging actions for school districts to work through because it's a topic that is very personal to most families," Superintendent Michael Muñoz said in a statement.
To keep the process open, the School Board is selecting a boundary adjustment advisory committee, and the district is encouraging parents and staff to take part. Applications can be submitted through 11:59 p.m. Sunday. The application form can be found at rochesterschools.org. The committee is limited to 35 members.
The Rochester district is adding a new elementary school on Overland Drive Northwest, and a new middle school on 65th Street Northwest. It is also demolishing Longfellow and Bishop elementary schools, and building new schools in their places.
Muñoz said the district would like to set the new boundaries by September 2021, but Scott Leopold, of Cooperative Strategies, said the process could be complete as early as May 2021.
There have been small boundary changes in the district more recently, but the last significant change was in 2008, prior to opening Gibbs Elementary School.
The two new schools will likely mean big changes for many Rochester families. We encourage those who might be affected to participate in the process. And we trust the district will keep it transparent and public.