Maryville Schools may change elementary school zones
By Matthew Stewart | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Maryville City Schools is getting ready to re-examine its elementary school zones.
During Monday’s meeting, the Maryville Board of Education gave system-level administrators permission to examine the school zones and produce a list of potential changes. School officials will present proposed changes at the September board meeting in anticipation of a future public hearing.
Officials hope to create new zone lines in October and inform families about the changes by December, said Assistant Director of Schools Mike Winstead. They will provide a grandfathering provision, which would run through third grade, and would request notification about each family’s intentions, so they can make preparations.
Maryville City Schools’ actions are a response to increased student enrollment, particularly in the John Sevier Elementary School zone, he said. The school district’s growth is primarily concentrated at John Sevier.
The district’s other elementary schools, Foothills Elementary School and Sam Houston Elementary School, have a relatively flat enrollment.
Systemwide enrollment has increased 123 students from the last day of school and increased 199 students year over year, said Director of Schools Stephanie Thompson. “We haven’t seen this type of enrollment since the economy slowed down,” she said.
School officials will meet with Blount County GIS Group Manager Raymond Boswell, obtain geographically referenced information and produce a draft in time for next month’s meeting, Winstead said.
The district is looking at John Sevier Elementary School’s northwest section, which is located along Harper Avenue, Rule Street and Wright Road.
School officials could also consider areas around Everett Avenue, he said. “We’re basically looking around Fort Craig.”
School officials would like to move between eight and 10 students in each grade to Sam Houston Elementary School, Winstead said. “John Sevier’s enrollment is perfect right now. It’s where we want it. However, we need a little more flexibility.”
John Sevier has 17 tuition students, he said. Foothills Elementary School has 28 tuition students, and Sam Houston Elementary School has 31 tuition students.
If the school board approves rezoning, the district will offer families the opportunity to be grandfathered into John Sevier, Winstead said. “In 2011, we set a good precedent for our families and their students. We’d want to offer it again.”
School officials don’t anticipate a large enrollment difference as a result of rezoning, he said. “We anticipate John Sevier will remain No. 1 (in terms of enrollment). Our target is 20 more students than Foothills, and Foothills will have 20 more students than Sam Houston.”
Coulter Grove Intermediate and Montgomery Ridge Intermediate schools’ enrollment numbers are nearly identical, Winstead said. Montgomery Ridge has 808 students, and Coulter Grove has 793 students.
The district isn’t looking at changing its intermediate school zones, he said.