Thursday, December 26, 2013

2015 Redistricting: Bring on the High Schools

In 2012 and 2013 it was Elementary Schools, in 2014 It was Middle Schools, and in 2015, in order to recreate a balanced feeder system and relieve over and under crowding, it's time to redistrict High Schools. In the plan I'm about to set forth all 12 High Schools will be effected. Fortunately, the County is planning ahead for a 13th High School in Elkridge in the next 10-15 years which will be needed by then if not sooner. However, it will not be open by 2015 or immediately thereafter so this plan will be sustainable until its opening. So, without further ado, I present my redistricting plan for 2015.
First I start with Atholton, in the coming years crowding will rear its ugly face as students from Pointers Run and Emerson enter High School. These students will remain at Atholton though. Instead I have opted to redistrict the Hawthorn Community out of Athtolton and into Wilde Lake. Upp until 2002 Wilde Lake served the Hawthorn Community and it was redistricted to Atholton thinking Atholton would be UNDER crowded by the opening of Reservoir. This was not the case and given that Hawthorn attends either Bryant Woods or Running Brook Elementaries. this creates a flawed feeder system at the High School level. With Hawthorn back at Wilde Lake High the feeder system for Wilde Lake Middle will be as follows; All Students from Bryant Woods and Running Brook will go to Wilde Lake High and only students from Clemens Crossing attending Wilde Lake Middle will attend Atholton.
Another tweak for the Athtolton district is Crest Road above Route 216. This area currently attends Reservoir. This is a small feed of the Hammond Elementary District that attends Reservoir. With the redistricting from Hammond Elementary into Fulton in 2012 this is the only part of Hammond Elementary still attending Reservoir. This redistricting will allow students attending Hammod Elementary to attend either Atholton or Hammond HS instead of the current three. I was hoping the ENTIRE area redistricted from Hammond ES to Fulton would then be redistricted to Lime Kiln in 2014 but now only a portion of the effected area was done. This would have eliminated a feed into Reservoir from Hammond MS. My plan fixes this "oversight" but apparently the County has gone on a different path.
Next we have Centennial. There are a few week feeds between Centennial and Mount Hebron that I will attempt to fix. First there's Worthington, the entire Worthington district was redistricted back into Mount Henron from Cdentennial in 2005 when Marriotts Ridge opened. This made the Middle School serving Worthington (Ellicott Mills) feed into three High Schools (Centennial, Howard, and Mount Hebron.) By redistricting Worthington from Mount Hebron BACK to Centennial, Ellicott Mills will only feed into two High Schools.
To make up for the loss of population from the Worthington Community, Mount Hebron will receive the River Mills Community from Centennial. This corrects a feed from Veterans. Right now, Veterans Students who attend Ellicott Mills will attend Centennial. But if you attend Dunloggin, you will attend either Centennial or Mount Hebron. By redistricting River Mills into Mount Hebron, the small feed from Veterans to Dunloggin to Centennial will be eliminated and all Veterans Students attending Dunloggin will attend Mount Hebron.
Another part of Centennial that needs addressing is the Wheatfield Way Community. This Neighborhood is very close to Howard and I can't for the life of me figure out why this was ever redistricted out of Howard. This also creates a very small feed of Waterloo into Centennial. By redistricting this Neighborhood back to Howard it will eliminate this small feed and the High Schools it feeds into as Howard or Long Reach and no longer Centennial.   
The last part of Centennial I will attempt to address is the Oak Lea Court Community. This area attends Manor Woods Elementary BUT attends Centennial. This was a small oversight I'm sure but this very small area is the only part of the Manor Woods District that doesn't attend Marriotts Ridge. That is why I'm electing to eliminate this small feed by redistricting Oak Lea Court from Centennial to Marriotts Ridge.
Next we come to Glenelg, there was a small part that was redistricted here from River Hill a few years ago which I think was a mistake. First off, the crowding that was supposed to occur at River Hill never came to fruition, second, this makes a very small feed of the Dayton Oaks District that attends Glenelg. In my 2014 Redistricting plan I opted to send the entire Dayton Oaks District into Folly Quarter and not having that entire feed feed into River Hill would defeat the purpose of having all of Dayton Oaks feed into River Hill. I would like to have the ENTIRE Folly Quarter District attend River Hill but in order to make that happen Glenwood would have to have a larger building for that amount of redistricting. If a replacement Glenwood with a 662 capacity were built I would champion the redistricting from Folly Quarter to Glenwood.
Next we come to Hammond. As part of the 2012 redistricting, parts of Bollman Bridge and Patuxent Valley as part of the 2014 redistricting now attend Reservoir instead of Hammond. Bollman Bridge and Patuxent Valley have both had all their High Schoolers attending Hammond. It used to be that only the Patuxent Valley part of Forest Ridge attended sans a small part of Emerson and then Murray Hill Students from Forest Ridge would attend Reservoir.As of 2014, the entire Forest Ridge District will attend Patuxent Valley. Therefore, in order to stay true to all of Patuxent Valley attending Hammond, the remainder of Forest Ridge not attending Hammond, should be redistricted there.
Also as part of the 2014 redistricting, a small part of the Patuxent Valley District just beyond Oakland Mills Road was redistricted to Owen Brown/Lake Elkhorn. This makes the portion of Owen Brown/Lake Elkhorn attending Hammond larger however I think it appropriate that all of Owen Brown/Lake Elkhorn attend Oakland Mills HS instead of Hammond. That is why the entire Oakland Mills Road/Guilford Gardens Community should be redistricted to Oakland Mills.

Next we have Howard, there has been a lot of growth in this area and it will need relief before the 13th High School opens. That is why I have elected to redistrict the lower Hanover Road area, Barrington Court, and the last remaining section of Locust Park to Long Reach, which can sustain the growth until High School #13 Opens.

Adding to Howard will be the Wheatfield Way Community which was discussed in the Centennial section.

Next there's Long Reach, all the redistricting here is addressed above in the Howard Section.

The Centennial section includes my proposed redistricting for both Marriotts Ridge and Mount Hebron.

The Hammond Section addresses Oakland Mills

Both Atholton and Hammond address Reservoir

Atholton also addresses Wilde Lake
That concludes my 2015 redistricting plan. The fact that I justified many of the proposals by eliminating small feeds from Elementary and Middle Schools and redistricted to keep Students attending High School with the same Students they attended Elementary and Middle School with shows the necessity of this plan. After 2015, I don't see a need for any more redistricting until 2019 when I would like to open four new Elementary Schools all at once. Stay tuned for that post! 


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Anonymous said...

Your plan to move Hawthorn to Wilde Lake is not sound. First of all, we don't talk about feeds from Elementary to High School. The feed is from middle to high and your proposal weakens the feed from WLMS to AHS. In addition, downtown development and new residential construction in Wilde Lake will put additional pressure on WLHS, so moving students into that school does not make sense (nor does the fact that Hawthorn goes all the way to BWES in the first place, but that is an argument for another blog). Finally, some of Hawthorn actually walks to AHS and it is ridiculous to bus walkers to a more distant high school. Relieve pressure on AHS by moving out students who are already bussed. The reason all of Hawthorn used to attend WLHS was because the polygon system was flawed. Some of that has been corrected, and that is why taxpayers no longer have to pay to bus students who live within the walking zone of AHS.

Spence Lean said...

I guess the fact that Hawthorn attended WLHS from its inception until 2002 is lost on you. And why don't we talk about ES to HS feeds? That same "weak feed" from WLMS to AHS was the same as what I'm proposing it to be in 1998 when I completed 8th grade at WLMS and moved to WLHS. 2002, when I graduated my cohort from Hawthorn as a whole were crushed to learn that their younger siblings would not be attending WLHS just like they had. If you're so upset about Hawthorn being bused all the way to BWES perhaps if and when Faulkner Ridge ES is rebuilt and reopens to combat the new housing Downtown, you can persuade the Attendance Area Adjustment Committee to redistrict Hawthorn there which was where Hawthorn was districted to attend ES from its inception until its 1983 closure.

Anonymous said...

Looking at the way districting maps were 10+ years ago is completely illogical. Redistricting is about looking forward, not looking backward. I hear the same argument (going back to the way things "used to be") from people in neighborhoods that used to be in Clarksville Middle School and are now unhappy since they were redistricted to Wilde Lake Middle School 10-15 years ago. Howard County doesn't look the same now as it did 10-20 years ago. River Hill was not developed. The HCPSS has added numerous schools, and most of the excess capacity is in the west. So it makes no sense to be moving people eastward/inward when you redistrict rather than westward/outward. Many single family homes which had school age children then have not turned over, and if you did your homework about the number of students living in each polygon you would know that.

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Anonymous said...

Our neighborhood of Dorsey Search is still split between 3 high schools which is very hard on the kids. My child will go to Dunloggin and then the kids will be split to either Mt. Hebron, Centenial or Wild Lake. Could you consider making it only 2 schools instead of 3. I have talked to kids who have said it was very hard on them. Thanks