Demographic Study Guiding Principles (01/19/12)
Ranking of Priorities
• Propose boundaries that will be functional for 10 years based on forecasted enrollment.
• Attempt to assign students to schools located closest to their homes. Allow K-8 students to walk where possible. The proximity of ES’s to MS’s should be maximized.
• Attempt to maximize/keep the school feeder concept intact. No more split feeders. Clusters only.
• When evaluating consolidation/closure scenarios and determining which facilities should be retained vs. closed, consideration should be given to minimizing disruption to established educational programming (retain existing IB programs, magnet schools, etc.)
• Ensure student safety and transportation efficiency by using major highway corridors and geographic features as zone boundaries. Give weight to traffic patterns, energy efficiency, etc. Consider time spent on buses.
• Assume NAHS capacity of 2400.
• Minimize impacts on areas that have been redistricted within the last three years.
• Recommend school consolidation/closures in areas where forecasted enrollment does not support multiple schools.
• Attempt to avoid splitting neighborhoods. (Neighborhood boundaries are determined by generally accepted definitions used by the City of Atlanta).
• Favor the retention of newer/larger facilities which have benefitted from recent capital investment in expansion or renovation.
• Retain more accessible, less congested school sites which have better transportation access and can accommodate future long-term expansion beyond the forecast period of this study.
• When consolidating, to the extent possible, avoid closing a high performing school to send children to a lower performing school.
• Don’t eliminate an IB school within an IB cluster.
• Retain ES splitting (K-3, 4-5) as a planning tool.
• Consider SPLOST funded school expansions as a planning tool.
• Be careful in moving students from high performing ES’s to low performing MS’s.
• Balance current utilization of retained buildings to 80% to 90% of capacity.
• In at least one model, minimize the number of transfers across the board.
• Before closing a school, consider the robustness of its partner support.
• No K-8 schools planning until Board reviews/resolves policy issues.
• Eliminate the 9th Grade Academy as a stand alone facility.