The Houston Independent School District Board of Education voted Thursday to adjust neighborhood attendance boundaries at 10 elementary schools to address classroom overcrowding resulting from growth throughout the city.
The attendance boundary proposals were created in response to state law, which requires kindergarten through fourth-grade classes to have no more than 22 students per classroom. Classes that exceed that number must request a state waiver.
Last year, the district had to submit about 1,500 class-size waiver requests. This year, working under a directive from the state, administrators have succeeded in reducing that number by roughly 40 percent.
The changes will go into effect for the 2016-2017 school year and would apply to new, incoming students. Students who are already enrolled still would be allowed to attend the school to which they are currently zoned.
The adjustments were made to attendance zones at 10 elementary schools:
- Bastian, Hartsfield, Kelso, and Young
- Highland Heights, Smith, Stevens, and Wainwright
- Frost and Law
Under the first proposal, the boundary for Kelso is being expanded while the boundary for Young is being reduced. The move is designed to better balance the enrollment at all four schools while also preparing for two new housing developments planned within the Young attendance zone.
The second proposal is designed to reduce overcrowding at Smith Elementary School, which currently is about 120 students over capacity. About 50 of those 120 students had to be capped and sent to neighboring Wainwright Elementary School.
Under that proposal, some Smith students will be shifted to Stevens, Highland Heights and Wainwright. The move is designed to alleviate overcrowding and reduce the need for capping at Smith.
No students would be affected by the third proposal, which calls for an adjustment to a boundary line that currently runs through the middle of an empty field. The field is expected to serve as the site for a future housing development.
For detailed information about each proposal and to view accompanying attendance zone maps, visit: http://www.houstonisd.org/Page/136340.
Also on Thursday, trustees adopted the 2016-2017 school calendar, which calls for school to start on Monday, Aug. 22 and conclude on Thursday, May 25.
Because the state now tracks mandated instruction time in minutes rather than days, HISD was able to extend each school day by five minutes. The additional time is equivalent to one day of instruction and will serve as one of the district’s two designated bad-weather make-up days.
The second bad weather day is scheduled for Friday, May 26.
Other planned holidays include:
- Labor Day, Sept. 5, 2016
- Fall Holiday, Oct. 12, 2016
- Thanksgiving Break, Nov. 23 to 25, 2016
- Winter Break, Dec. 19, 2016 to Jan. 2, 2017
- Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, Jan. 16, 2017
- Spring Break, March 13 to 17, 2017
- Spring Holiday, April 14, 2017