No District Changes for E. Rivers, Brandon in New APS Report
Demographers in recommendation to Davis posted Friday say Brandon expansion, rebuilding E. Rivers to capacity of 792, will handle growth
Planned expansion of Morris Brandon and the rebuilding of E. Rivers will provide sufficient capacity over the next five years, and "no elementary boundaries should be changed,"APS demographers say in new recommendations for Superintendent Erroll B. Davis Jr. posted Friday.
"The new E. Rivers (at a capacity of 792) should be able to absorb the preschool enrollment “bubble” and Bolton will stay below 100% capacity if the proportion of preschool students entering the school occurs at the rate forecasted," the consultants say in their report, which Davis will consider in forming his preliminary recommendations, to be posted on the APS web site Sunday and presented to the Atlanta Board of Education Monday.
Previous recommendations had caused for changes in the Brandon and E. Rivers districts, drawing strong opposition from neigborhood groups.
The demographers also said that "Garden Hills is the facility that has the highest probability of exceeding the 100% capacity threshold over the next five years and we recommend that APS continue to study alternatives for accommodating projected enrollment growth at this facility." They did not mention proposals for a new primary center for the school, as have been offered.
While the demographers say that additional elementary capacity will be needed for Garden Hills if the school is not expanded or a portion of its area redistricted, "we are not recommending a location or attendance zone for a new elementary school at this time."
In middle school options, the demographers say enough combined capacity will exist at Sutton and North Atlanta middle schools for at least the next six to eight years. The report doen't make a final decision on a middle school configuration, saying either a sixth grade academy at Sutton and a seventh and eight grade at the present North Atlanta High buildng would work, as would separate sixth through eighth grade facilities.
Apparently in reaction to oppostion to a plan to move Centennial Place students to Buckhead middle and high schools, the demographers say that their middle school recommendation "assumes that additional capacity will be created within SRT 3 to accommodate grade 6-8 enrollment growth in that area."
The demographers said they did not compile new maps for the revised recommendations to Davis, but would use the existing maps for previously released Options A and B, upon which residents made their comments. To view the maps, go to the APS website.
Here are the consultants' introduction and summary for School Reform Team 4 North, the North Atlanta cluster. For the demographers' complete report, including all areas of the city, see the attached PDF.
The following pages outline the Consultant Team’s preliminary recommendations to Superintendent Davis regarding the development of a single “preferred” redistricting scenario. These recommendations were developed after (1) reviewing the demographic trends/forecasts of the district’s attendance areas; (2) considering public input given during the January 30 to February 2 community meetings; (3) reading written comments received since the community meetings; and (4) making a final recalculation of all facility capacities. At this point we have not addressed the appropriate phasing of these recommendations or their fiscal implications to the District. We have also chosen not to prepare a map of illustrating the recommendations outlined below and instead direct reviewers to appropriate sections of the Options A and B maps currently posted on the APS web site. The Consultant Team will instead focus our time on preparing maps to support the Superintendent’s preferred plan to be released on March 5. Our recommendations are as follows:
SRT 4 North
With the planned expansion of Brandon and the rebuilding of Rivers, the District should have sufficient capacity in this area to accommodate expected enrollment increases over the next 5 years. No elementary boundaries should be changed. The new E. Rivers (at a capacity of 792) should be able to absorb the preschool enrollment “bubble” and Bolton will stay below 100% capacity if the proportion of preschool students entering the school occurs at the rate forecasted. Garden Hills is the facility that has the highest probability of exceeding the 100% capacity threshold over the next five years and we recommend that APS continue to study alternatives for accommodating projected enrollment growth at this facility. Absent of expanding or redistricting a portion of Garden Hills, additional elementary school capacity will probably still be needed in the out years of the forecast. However, we are not recommending a location or attendance zone for a new elementary school at this time.
As for the middle schools, there is sufficient combined capacity at Sutton MS and the new North Atlanta MS to serve SRT 4 for at least the next 6 to 8 years. A configuration of either a 6th grade center at Sutton and 7-8 grade center at the current North Atlanta HS, or two grade 6-8 middle schools at each location will work. This recommendation assumes that additional capacity will be created within SRT 3 to accommodate grade 6-8 enrollment growth in that area.