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Tomball ISD to Hold Open Public Forum on New Attendance Zones Nov. 14

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TOMBALL, TX – Tomball Independent School District will hold an open public forum regarding new school attendance zones Thursday, November 14 at 5:30 p.m. at the Tomball ISD Staff Development Center, 1302 Keefer Rd., Tomball, TX 77375.

Currently, Tomball ISD has 20 campuses. Beginning in August 2020, the district will be opening a new elementary at the Cypress-Rosehill Complex, and a new junior high school in 2021. Rezoning is necessary as the district grows to reach a balance in attendance at each school.

In addition to the public forum, Tomball ISD is accepting input through an online survey, consisting of six questions. To submit feedback, visit www.tomballisd.net/apps/form/zone-survey.

 

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During the rezoning process, the District Zone Committee (DZC) will work with a demographic consultant and jointly develop options for the new attendance boundaries. The committee will make a recommendation to the Board of Trustees, who will review and set the new attendance zones.

The DZC is comprised of 24 individuals representing stakeholders from across the district. Of the 24 people on the committee, 19 are parents/community members and five are staff members. Parents on the committee were nominated by campus principals. Both the northern and southern parts of the district are represented on the committee.

There were three working meetings in 2019, on October 3, 10, & 17, that were open to the public during which the committee worked toward creating the new zones. Using a set of guiding principles and target enrollments for impacted schools (Lakewood, Rosehill, Wildwood, and Willow Wood), the committee broke into four groups and worked with maps provided by the demographer that showed student enrollment in each neighborhood. Each group created and presented its plan to the committee.

 

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At the end of the first two meeting sessions, there were four elementary plans and four junior high plans. Using the guiding principles and feedback from the committee and Tomball ISD’s Transportation Department, there were three plans for each school to review on the final committee meeting. During the final meeting, committee members rank voted their first, second, and third preference to arrive at the draft recommended plans.

Using feedback from the survey, public forum, emails, and comment cards collected from non-committee members at the committee meetings, the DZC will deliberate, make adjustments to the plans as needed, and recommend a final plan for each school to the Tomball ISD Board of Trustees for approval at the December 10, 2019, School Board meeting.

Guiding principles used to direct the boundary work:

  • Optimize Space: efficient use of building capacity to reduce overcrowding and underutilization
  • Neighborhood Unity: make the best effort to keep subdivisions together
  • Natural Lines: use natural boundary lines when possible
  • Family Impact: consider the impact that changing attendance zones will have on families (in particular, considering past rezoning moves)
  • Growth: best effort will be made to plan for future development so that zones do not have to be reconsidered between scheduled campus openings
  • Transportation Cost: bus routes should be as efficient as possible, giving consideration to minimizing ride times

 

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Enrollment targets set for each impacted campus:

  • Elementary #11: 552-644 students
  • Lakewood Elementary School: 708-753 students (80-85% building capacity)
  • Wildwood Elementary School: 736-782 students (80-85% building capacity)
  • Junior High #4: 486-613
  • Willow Wood Junior High School: 884-1011 (70-80% building capacity)

 

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Other Considerations:

  • Grandfathering: In the past when the district has opened new elementary, intermediate, or junior high schools and created new attendance boundaries, students have not been grandfathered to remain at their school. In keeping with that process, Tomball ISD will not grandfather students in their current school. 
  • Bus Transportation: In consultation with the Transportation Department, the most direct route to the new schools would include a short ride on the Grand Parkway. Once the attendance boundaries are established, the Transportation Department will begin creating new routes for the upcoming school year and will share through the district website.
  • Limited Open Enrollment Program: The Limited Open Enrollment Program program does not affect these impacted campuses, as the program is not offered in any of the schools in the southern end of the district.

Source: Tomball ISD

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