Schedule set for boundary adjustments

Work on the boundary realignment process for Shenandoah County Public Schools begins Jan. 11, with a final decision made by the School Board on March 10.

A steering committee has been assembled and will participate in at least two meetings to establish a framework for the development of the boundaries.  Superintendent Jeremy Raley said this week that 24 representatives have been invited to be a part of the committee.

“Nominations for potential members of the boundary adjustment steering committee were solicited from School Board members and school division administrative staff. Invitations have been sent to eight parents, educators and citizens representing each campus,” he said.

Staff from DeJong Richter will develop the potential boundary adjustment scenarios. Then the community will have the opportunity to share feedback on the options at a community meeting on Feb. 10 and at a public hearing on March 2.

At a Dec. 10 meeting, the School Board approved an addendum to an agreement with HBA and DeJong Richter to continue their work with the consultants.

Cynthia Page, director of finance for the school division said the addendum to the agreement amends the original agreement to add the work of determining attendance boundaries placement to create a balanced student enrollment and facility utilization.

“The plan will include a district-wide committee, the use of enrollment data and GIS data, a community meeting, the opportunity for online input, and a report to the school board with recommendations,” she said.

Page said that the original agreement called for a two-phase facilities evaluation.

The first phase was the short-term study to find a solution to the overcrowding at W.W. Robinson Elementary School and Sandy Hook Elementary School that could be in place by fall 2016.

The second phase will be to complete a comprehensive facilities and infrastructure plan. This was dependent of the funds provided by the Board of Supervisors.

“The objective of the second phase of the facilities evaluation is to help us develop schools as 21st century learning centers and cultural hubs for the community. This will include a baseline analysis of classrooms and other educational environments needed to prepare students to be future, world-ready learners,” she said.

Meeting schedule:

Jan. 11 at 6 p.m.: Initial steering committee meeting

Jan. 25 at 6 p.m.: Second steering committee meeting

Feb. 10 at 6 p.m.: A community meeting will be held in the Central High School cafeteria for feedback on the options.

Feb. 25 at 7:30 p.m.: Presentation to the School Board on recommendations from DeJong Richter.

March 2 at 7:30 p.m. – Public hearing on boundary adjustment recommendations.

March 10 at 7 p.m. – Approval of boundary adjustments.

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or ktoy@nvdaily.com