Columbia School Board to vote on Battle Elementary boundaries

Sunday, April 13, 2014 | 6:00 a.m. CDT
When Eliot Battle Elementary School opens in 2015, the total enrollment could be either 365 or 404 students, depending on how district officials choose to draw the boundary lines. The new school will draw from the current student populations of Alpha Hart Lewis Elementary and Two Mile Prairie Elementary.

COLUMBIA — Two proposals for Eliot Battle Elementary School attendance boundaries will be presented Monday night to the Columbia School Board.

The board is expected to choose one of the proposals at its Monday meeting. Both proposals would affect students attending Two Mile Prairie and Alpha Hart Lewis elementary schools.

If you go

What: Columbia School Board meeting

When: 6:30 p.m. Monday

Where: Neil C. Aslin Administration Building, 1818 W. Worley St.

The first proposal would move 365 students to Battle Elementary for the 2015-16 school year, according to board meeting materials. An estimated 241 students from Alpha Hart Lewis and 124 students from Two Mile Prairie would change schools.

The second proposal would move 404 students to the new elementary school, according to the meeting materials. An estimated 241 students from Alpha Hart Lewis and 163 students from Two Mile Prairie would change schools.

The number of students the school can take depends on the number of students in each classroom. For example, the school building could hold 462 students if the 21 classrooms had 22 students each. If there were 20 students in each classroom, the building could hold 420 students.

There would be room for community growth regardless of which attendance boundary proposal is chosen.

At two community forums on Feb. 11 and 25, several families preferred the first proposal, according to the meeting materials.

Nature school

Peter Stiepleman, assistant superintendent for elementary education and incoming district superintendent, is expected to give an update to the board on the proposed nature school at Rock Bridge Memorial State Park.

The board plans to vote on whether to send a grant application to the Columbia Public Schools Foundation that would fund classroom materials and equipment, according to the grant application.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources would provide the funds for construction of the school building.

The grant application also gives details on a proposed timeline for the nature school. A committee is expected to develop curriculum and learning outcomes in each core subject area from spring 2014 to winter 2015.

Stiepleman and Mike Szydlowski, Columbia Public Schools science coordinator, plan to visit fourth-grade classrooms in fall 2014 to speak with students about the nature school and how to apply. The district will also hold informational meetings for parents.

The school is projected to open for the 2015-16 school year.

Other agenda items:

  • Ben Tilley, the district's Title I supervisor, is expected to give a report on this year's summer school offerings. Summer school programs will be offered at 17 of the 19 elementary schools, five of the six middle schools and all four high schools. Online class offerings will expand from last summer's four courses to 12 this summer.
  • The board will present future superintendent Stiepleman's proposed contract to the public at Monday's meeting. Stiepleman's salary would be $165,000 for the 2014-2015 school year.
  • The newly elected board members will be sworn in. Incumbents Jonathan Sessions and Helen Wade and returning board member Paul Cushing will take their oaths of office for their three-year terms.
  • The board is expected to vote on a new board president and vice president.
  • The board will also recognize outgoing member Tom Rose at the beginning of the meeting.

Supervising editor is Allie Hinga.

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