March 2017 Update
A copy of the presentation, including specific neighborhoods impacted and enrollment estimates following the rebalancing, can be found here.
While Promise Road, Stony Creek and North are the only three schools in the district that will see either current students leaving and/or new students arriving, the committee is also proposing changes that will impact other schools.
Specifically, all Noblesville Schools students (elementary and middle school) will attend the assigned school building within their boundaries. This will end all transfers–including previously approved transfers–between schools within the district. (New requests for out of district transfers are already not allowed, per board policy.) This change in our transfer policy is an important component to ensure balanced schools.
Transfer exceptions will be made for children of district employees (as space allows) and in a small number of unique special education situations.
Current 4th and 7th grade students who are impacted either by the new school boundary lines or the end of the transfer policy may be grandfathered to stay at their current school, if a parent so chooses. Transportation will not be provided for grandfathered students, and younger siblings will not be grandfathered.
Also, please note that due to projected enrollment levels and the mix of students, some elementary schools may find the need to use portable learning spaces next year. This detail is also noted in the boundary management presentation. If your child is impacted by a portable learning space next year, you would be notified at that time.
For additional information on the boundary management proposal and/or to provide your input, please feel free to attend one of the two remaining Boundary Management Committee meetings noted below:
· January 26th, 2017: Stony Creek Elementary, 1350 Greenfield Pike, Noblesville (6:30PM)
· January 31st, 2017: North Elementary, 440 North 10th St, Noblesville (6:30PM)
District enrollment has continued to grow by approximately 200 students a year, topping over 10,200 students for the current school year. Increasing class sizes accounts for some of this growth, as graduating classes are smaller than incoming elementary classes. For example, there are 633 students in the current senior class and the current fourth grade class across the district has 855 students.
Growth has not been distributed evenly across the district and has created some schools where enrollment is at building capacity–especially Noble Crossing and Promise Road Elementary along the southern border of the city. Promise Road was required to bring in a portable this school year to meet classroom space demand.
Other schools, such as North and Stony Creek Elementary near downtown Noblesville, have seen slowed growth in recent years, creating space in their buildings to accommodate more students.
There is also an enrollment imbalance between East and West middle schools, with almost 300 more students attending West.
“Rebalancing school boundaries often impacts multiple schools across the district and we appreciate that this kind of change can be very stressful for families,” shared Dr. Beth Niedermeyer, superintendent of Noblesville Schools. “Unfortunately we can’t control where and how our growth occurs and must address it when we don’t have appropriate learning space for students. Providing the best student learning environments, minimizing disruptions to families and maximizing existing space are the key goals as this issue is explored. Direct involvement from parents on the committee is a meaningful part of the process.”
The district commissioned a professional demographic study in 2014 which predicts a few tight years in certain areas. District leaders are carefully monitoring growth and may seek a future capital referendum for new construction if it becomes warranted.
Meetings will be held this winter at schools to discuss potential rebalancing plans, answer questions and seek input from parents. The committee will then finalize their recommendations for a March/April school board approval. Any proposed boundary changes will go into effect for the 2017-2018 school year.