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Rockford Public Schools elementary attendance boundaries must shift to accommodate the district's new elementary school footprint. This shift is the result of the School Board-approved 10-year facilities plan that lists school closures, more than a dozen building additions and the potential to build two new elementary schools. A draft plan presented to the Facilities Oversight Committee last week redrew the existing 26 elementary school attendance zones into 21.
The proposed changes would affect 14 percent of students who were in elementary schools for the 2014-15 school year, not the 25 percent initially estimated at last week's presentation to the Facilities Oversight Committee. The independent demographer, Robert Schwarz of RSP and Associates, said the 14 percent uses precise figures – numbers of students – instead of a very rough estimate he announced last week.
- Affected for the 2016-17 school year: 537 (of those, 306 are from the Walker School zone)
- Affected for the 2017-18 school year: none
- Affected for the 2018-19 school year: 637
- Affected for the 2019-20 school year: 106
- Summary: Of the 9,132 total elementary school students who are not in specialty programs, only 1,280 are affected by the proposed changes.
That figure includes K-3 students enrolled in the 2014-15 school year who are not in specialty programs. Students who were in fourth and fifth grades last school year will have moved on to middle school by the time any zone changes are implemented, so they are not included in this tally. That figure will rise each year as new kindergarten students are enrolled for the 2015-16 school year and each consecutive year.
The Rockford School Board will hear a presentation from Schwarz, the demographer, at its regular meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the 3rd floor Board Room of the Administration Building, 501 7th St.
Visit the construction website to see the updated presentation from the demographer, and answers to frequently asked questions.