Attendance boundaries committee prepares for community forums

Saturday, January 29, 2011 | 3:16 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — A committee in charge of redrawing attendance boundaries for Columbia's public schools has stepped up preparation for a series of community forums in March.

At a meeting Thursday, members of the Secondary Enrollment Planning Committee listed issues that could impact the process of revising boundaries — transportation routes, socioeconomic balance, logical divisions, the district’s transfer policy, future city growth and keeping elementary school classmates together.

Community Forum Schedule

All meetings are from 7-9 p.m.

March 1: Hickman High School

March 3: Rock Bridge High School

March 8: West Junior High School

March 10: Jefferson Junior High School

March 15: Oakland Junior High School

March 17: Smithton Middle School

March 22: Lange Middle School

March 24: Gentry Middle School

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The public can respond to the committee's assumptions during eight community forums to be held Tuesdays and Thursdays between March 1 and 24 at schools throughout the district. Don Ludwig, committee co-chairman, said he is looking for feedback that committee members may have overlooked.

The planning committee is pacing itself to ensure consideration of all key factors in the process.

“We want to grade ourselves as we go through this thing,” Ludwig said.

After the forums, committee meetings will resume April 7 and continue every other Thursday for the remainder of the school year.

Those meetings will focus on merging public input from the forums with the committee's list of issues. Ludwig said representatives from districts that have also added a third high school will be invited to share their experiences of revising attendance boundaries.

A slide show presentation of the committee’s goals, meeting schedule, list of members and long-term time line can be downloaded here by clicking on the Jan. 24 link.

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