At the end of each parent meeting parents were given a survey to complete to provide additional feedback. Below is the raw data from that survey typed directly as written by parents.
What are the strengths of the boundary proposal?
- Even students remaining at a less crowded Bell will have a much less diverse environment. Bell already has the lowest percentage of minority students in the district (14%). This proposal will make Bell a less diverse environment.
- Smaller class size (maybe?)
- Strong community
- Bell would have room for imaginary kids
- It benefits kids that don’t live here yet
- Better child : teacher ratio
- There is no “strength” in this proposal that benefits our children. Our children’s well‐being is of upmost importance here. Convenience for the school administration, Dr. Rikli, Shadowlake 2, and Parents is not a factor of importance for us– Our children are scared, worried, anxious, & now being labeled as “poor” and forced to move from our school that is right next door and within walking, biking, skating, and running distance.
What concerns do you have about the proposal?
- Safety - kids in Glenwood can safely walk to school today – not under current proposal.
- Social Economic – Bell is already at/near bottom of minority & free lunches. This will make it worse.
- How can you expect families to “buy in” to a school (buy teacher books at book fair, buy bday books for library, invest time & money into a fundraiser for a playground your child will never play on again) on & on & on. Buying into their rules, rewards, their school spirit (w/personality as well as money to spirit wear)… & then start all that over.
- Kids Club priority
- Discriminatory against “old” neighborhood
- Crossing 84th
- Highest rated school to lowest in district
- Splitting families
- Psychological Impacts
- Diversity issues – leaving Bell gives Bell even less diversity – Prior quotes from Board
- All other concerns on group B notes
- Socioeconomic concerns
- Keeping families together
- My daughter has moved schools twice already. We just moved from an apartment to a house in the Bell neighborhood, so she wouldn’t have to switch schools again.
- Splitting up families, if all siblings are at Bell!!
- Moving kids that don’t need to be moved to accommodate the more wealthy kids
- Lack of due diligence in looking at other options. This entire process is based off a Shadow Lake 2 community that doesn’t have students yet. Titan Springs makes more sense to re-bus from Titan to Walnut.
- You are proposing splitting families without regard to other circumstances other than grade. You are also proposing busing kids to school when they can walk to Bell while also busing kids from neighborhoods like Titan Springs that are farther away.
- No justification for choice of Glenwood Hills
- The children
- Going from a 9/10 school to 4/10 – No Bueno!
- My kiddo is in 4th grade, making friends is not easy. He’s been here since Kindergarten. He feels comfortable at Bell.
- Bell Elementary is in our backyard – we are able to walk & ride bikes to the school when weather is permitting (our actual home is closer than some of the homes in Shadowlake)!
- Disctict is willing to incur additional bussing expenses to bus another neighborhood when they are already bussing THREE neighborhoods to Bell (using 2 busses).
- Socioeconomically‐ you are proposing to eradicate Glenwood Hills Neighborhood from Bell Elementary and replace with yet another high income neighborhood rather than looking at redirecting neighborhoods like Titan Springs and Highland estates which are already being bussed to Bell and are across HWY 370 with no safe way to walk to Bell.
- Glenwood Hills is often first looked to change schools – with this same situation occurring every few years and our neighborhood is always forced to uproot and change schools
- Grandfathering in current 5th grade students…I believe this should also include 4th grade (possibly 3rd) based on the where these children are socially, emotionally, & mentally in their developmental stages.
Overall, how would you rate the format of tonight’s meeting?
On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being a waste of time and 10 being very productive.
#1 - 1
#2 - 1
#3 - 1
#4 - 1
#5 - 3
#6 - 1
#7 - 2
#8 - 0
#9 - 1
#10 - 0
- Productive to voice our opinions
- It depends on whether this was just a formality
- Decision is already made I think
- It was a bit of a shame to see the lack of empathy from Dr. Rikli at the meeting‐ His affect was extremely flat, without emotion or an ounce of empathy from the families pleading their cases and bringing forth their thoughts – which was the purpose of this meeting & why we were invited. I’m extremely disappointed in the effort put forth by the administration to ease any worry/anxiety and offer up any helpful positive insights they may have. You will definitely catch more flies with honey and this Community Forum most definitely made the majority leave with a bad taste in their mouth.
Do you have any suggestions for improving tonight’s meeting format?
- Let certain parents request private meetings
- * more information needed regarding school students are being changed to (WC) – ratings, scores, etc, class sizes, facilities
- Bring more facts regarding boundaries etc so we can discuss from full facts.
- Have the Superintendent be less condescending!
- The question of socio-economic was answered “no”, yet it was later admitted that it was part of the issue which validates the concern of most, which was that we are being moved because we are the pooper neighborhood. The message and answers given were delivered in a way that not very compassionate. There was an attempt made of empathy, but it was very hollow. The clearly more optimal suggestions were mostly disregarded, making this feel like this decision was already made, making this nothing more that a formality.
- Actual answer our questions instead of burning through them and saying “well, that’s what we decided!”
- I just hope you really listened and take our questions and concerns into consideration.
- Sunday September 14th, 2019 at 7:00pm an email titled “Important Boundary Information” was sent to all parents in the Glenwood Hills Neighborhood that have children who currently attend Bell Elementary. I, personally, did not get a chance to read this e‐mail as we were spending our Sunday evening together as a family, relaxing, making lunch for the next day, setting out our clothes & snacks for school and preparing for the week ahead. I finally was able to sit down and address my phone and read the “important” e‐mail from the school. Quickly realizing other parents in the neighborhood were voicing opinions on our social media page I discovered many of the children were already aware and parents described their responses in words such as “crying, upset, sobbing, etc.” My children were in bed and unfortunately I had to deliver the news in the morning‐ on a Monday morning before school with little time for a child to digest and process the information and caused extreme worry & anxiety about what was going to happen. I’m sad that I had to deliver this news and assist with some of the anxiety, I’m sad that this is one of the first things that friends that live in other neighborhoods mentioned to children when they saw them at school, but I’m mostly sad for the children & extremely disappointed in the school and the unfortunate timing this information was delivered to our families and the effect of this timing on our children. What prevented this email from going out to families on Friday after school to allow the parent’s to digest the information and then gently deliver to their children, ease their worries, and talk about their feelings? I’m not aware of many adults that like to be hit with “bad news” on a Monday morning let alone a child that is still developing the skills needed to emotionally process negative information.