At the presentation, parents were divided into small groups and asked to provide the strengths, concerns, suggestions and questions they had about the proposal. The data collected in those breakout rooms is below typed directly as reported in the room.
After hearing the presentation, what do you think are the strengths of the boundary proposal?
- Strong community
- Opportunities within each school
- Common education in all schools
- Over population
- Transportation provided
- 5th grade grandfathered
- Potential for smaller class sizes
- No comments offered
Now let's shift our thoughts to what do you see as concerns regarding the proposed boundary change?
- Seems like moving some out just so more can come in
- Movement of kids that already are here
- Unnecessary movement
- Students are here and well adjusted
- Students are emotionally attached and invested in Bell
- Splitting of families/siblings
- Kids traumatized – moving, making new friends
- New school each year – adjustment
- Safety – crossing 84th street
- Kids club – availability and priority
- How to receive younger kids from bus that are forced to go to Walnut Creek but my 5th grader will be at Bell
- Relationships/friends are at school, not necessarily in the neighborhood
- Jumping the gun with the “green” plots on the map
- Worry about what is ours right now.
- It makes us (the parents) feel like we are picking favorites. 5th grade can stay, but younger siblings have to go
- Impact at home is huge
- Feels like Glenwood Hills is being labeled as poor (SES)
- Being picked on
- We bought our house because it went to Bell
- We endured construction on 84h street and when Schram Road was being put in. We already sacrificed.
- Bell Elementary went through a boundary change 10 years ago
- An established neighborhood is being affected
- Shadow Lake isn’t mature yet, they could go somewhere else
- Dividing children – they are going to end back up potentially at the same middle school – but you can’t hedge your bet on that with the way the neighborhoods are growing.
- Why is it just strictly Glenwood Hills?
- There are children being bussed into Bell that are not being taken into account, but the children who can walk to school would be bussed out.
- Safety concern: Kids that are crossing a cul-de-sac are being bused out - whereas students who would have to cross a more dangerous road would stay. Mentioned the benefits of walking to school…choosing the less healthy option of being bussed versus the less safe option of crossing a dangerous road.
- Asking parents to split their resources, between 6th graders who can stay at Bell versus younger students who can’t.
- Splitting families: It is very supportive to have siblings together in schools. Could send both kids to new school, but would have to start over with staff knowing children for health issues. It would also have an emotional toll.
- Staff children attend school that are not in Bell Elementary boundary lines.
- Military students won’t provide consistent attendance numbers - is that being taken into consideration? Current families say they aren’t going anywhere.
- Non-traditional/blended families have special needs – how does that play into the changes?
- Children perform better academically when they are comfortable with their building staff – what happens if it changes again? It is unfair for the kids. Where do you draw the line, once these kids are moved we aren’t moving them again. It’s hard on families, district.
- Concerned whether there is a socio-economic issue at play here compared to Titan Springs neighborhood.
- What is being proposed is dividing the socio-economic line – taking school with lowest minority attendance and making that number lower and sending them to a lower rated school. Walnut Creek has a 4 out of 10 rate on the internet compared to the best rated school in the district.
- Diversity: This isn’t good for students because multiple classrooms will have low minority numbers. Says diversity is good for students.
- Those who don’t have children yet – would like to know about meetings like this.
- Don’t feel like they have enough information to offer suggestions – wants more information to evaluate the proposal. Feels like the neighborhood is an easy target, doesn’t feel like they are getting the full story.
- Wants more information about kids that don’t live in this neighborhood, how many kids? Wants statistics.
- Being replaced by kids who are bused in.
- Feels like they are being singled out because they don’t have mansions or drive a Lexus, because they don’t choose to.
- Feels like they are targeted because this has happened before.
The following resources were shared by a parent. Who participated in the discussion.
Childhood Obesity. 10(1): 34-41. (2014)
"Kindergarten ACS (active communing to school) was associated with lower BMI in fifth grade"
Journal of Attention Disorders. Volume 17, issue 1, p70-82 (2013)
"[before school] Physical activity shows promise for addressing ADHD symptoms in young children."
University of Toronto, Guy Faulkner, Ron Buliung, Caroline Fusco (2012)
"Children who walk to school have been found to have higher academic performance in terms of attention/alertness, verbal, numeric, and reasoning abilities; higher degree of pleasantness and lower levels of stress during the school day."
BMC Public Health 19, Article 573 (2019)
"...actively commuting children had significantly lower Odds Ratios for being in high BMI... than passive commuters."
Pediatrics. 130(2) e296-304. (2012)
"...active commuting to school was inversely related to obesity. Attributable risk estimates suggest obesity prevalence would decrease by... 22.1% (95% CI: 0.1%, 43.3%) if all adolescents walked/biked to school at least 4 days per week."
As you listed to the presentation and heard the strengths and concerns shared in this room… Are there suggestions you have to make the proposal better?
- Move Shadow Lake 2 that doesn’t have kids yet to Walnut Creek.
- The land that is not in PLCS yet could go to Walnut Creek too.
- Grandfather current Bell students and future students in those families.
- Build onto Bell to accommodate growth.
- We are the school with the highest fundraising in the state. It wouldn’t take us long to fundraise money to build an addition.
- At the minimum, grandfather the 5th grade students and the their siblings
- Have resources available to talk to students and help them with the transition
- There is already a buzz around the school
- Toss out the proposal
- Adding some bussing for additional areas to decrease the parking lot traffic
- Don’t send messages at 7:30 p.m. on a Sunday night. Bad timing.
- Want a better plan or proposal to keep families together.
- Wants a one-year exemption – if a 6th grader stays, so their siblings could stay for that year, then the younger students would move over to Walnut Creek.
- Sibling tract that could be followed? Could current families or families that have siblings that go here be grandfathered in.