BASD Deviation and Boundary Letter January 2019
Dear Parent, Guardian, Community Member,
The Boyertown Area School District school board has directed the superintendent and district leadership team to develop a school utilization plan (Rightsizing our facility usage) that more effectively, efficiently and equitably enroll and assign students to our schools. As part of the process for making the best decision possible for student enrollment and assignment, the Board’s enrollment committee has or will receive current data on our school and district demographics, enrollment projections, and possible building utilization scenarios prepared by Montgomery Educational Consultants. Presentations will be provided to portray how in the Boyertown Area School District, the distribution of school-aged children has and will continue to change over time due to enrollment decline or growth as new housing developments are built and as existing housing stock turns over.
As the communities within the Boyertown Area School District have changed, it is now necessary to reallocate/redistrict our students. Redistricting our students is the process of redrawing neighborhood school district boundaries to address these changes and produce an equitable distribution of students among different schools.
The Boyertown Area School District plan for redistricting will not be in full effect until the 2020-2021 school year to provide our parents and students with adequate notice of any changes in school assignment. However, to effectively and as accurately as possible implement any necessary changes, the district will begin taking steps to set the existing boundaries firmly and identifying which schools students should attend based on their current residence. As part of the district’s plan to move towards more efficiency and effectiveness of taxpayer resources and the finalization of the redistricting plan of 2020-2021, the following areas will be changed for the upcoming 2019-2020 school year.
School Assignment Deviation Requests
The Boyertown Area School District will not be accepting any new school assignment deviation requests for grades K-8 beginning the 2019-2020 school year which includes any applications for childcare purposes. Students will be assigned to their home school based on where they reside within the school district boundaries. No student will be granted a deviation to another school due to childcare arrangements.
If your child is currently on a school assignment deviation request for the 2018-2019 school year, the school district will allow you to request deviation for the 2019-2020 school year only. Please remember that all applications must be reapproved for the following school year, regardless of current status. Please note, if approved for the additional year, parent transportation will be required. The 2019-2020 school year will be the last year for all deviations as granted in the past.
Please be advised that there will be no grandfathering for an incoming sibling of a currently deviated student beyond specific reasons associated with educational plans. If the parent/guardian wishes to change a current deviation for the 2019-2020 school year, the incoming (sibling) student will not be permitted to deviate as well. Please note, parents will still be responsible for transportation on approved deviations.
Gray Area Assignments
In 2010, the Boyertown Area School District developed ten areas of school assignment known as the “Gray Area.” Simply put, a student registering in one of the particular “gray area” zones could get assigned to either one of the two schools based on current enrollment and existing transportation routes at the time the student registered or relocated within one of the areas.
In the 2019-2020 school year, student registration staff will no longer utilize the “gray area” zones, and any student currently registered based upon the “gray area” will be anchored/ assigned to a home school based on where they reside within the school attendance boundaries.
This change in the process and student assignment will allow the school district to depict a more accurate representation of where boundary adjustments are needed during the redistricting process. It is essential for our parents, students, and community to understand that this process will occur over the next two school years and changes in school assignment will be necessary for some of our students. These changes are intended to provide our students, teachers, and staff with the most effective and efficient use of our facility resources in a manner that positively supports teaching and learning. As changes occur, sometimes tough decisions will be made for us to accomplish our goal of offering a quality education equitably.
Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact the student services office at (610) 367-6031, Prompt 7 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. Where can we find a map of the current gray areas?
A. The gray areas developed in school year 2010 are no longer going to be utilized after the current school year.
Q. Where can we review the updated district attendance boundaries?
A. There are no boundary updates as this time. We are in the infancy stages. As outlined in the letter, the boundaries are being reviewed and no final arrangements have been made. Once the boundaries are available, we will share with our community.
Q. What is a school deviation request?
A. A deviation request is when your home is in one school attendance area, but your request to attend another school attendance area for any reason.
Q. My student is attending a school outside of our home attendance area this year on a deviation request. What now?
A. During the 2019-2020 school year, the Boyertown Area School District will accept requests for school assignment deviation. There is no guarantee of approval. If approved, parent transport may be required.
During the 2020-2021 school year, the Boyertown Area School District will not accept any requests for school assignment deviation. The student will be slated to attend the school in their home attendance area.
Q. We have a currently enrolled student who was assigned to a gray area, will my incoming student follow their sibling and be assigned to the same school?
A. The Boyertown Area School District will keep families together if the student will not be moving up to the secondary levels. (Current Grade 5 student).
Q. Can you tell me where my child will be attending school years from now?
A. We cannot provide any preliminary school assignments as we have not completed the redistricting process.
Q. When will we receive school assignments for our incoming student?
A. The Boyertown Area School District will review our timeline and keep you posted of any updates.
Q. My child is already assigned within a gray area, will they be reassigned?
A. Any student that has already been assigned/anchored to a gray area home school will not be reevaluated and moved for the 2019-2020 school year. A change for the 2020-2021 school year may occur if the district lines are moved for your current area, otherwise, your child’s current anchored school will continue to be where they attend for the upcoming elementary years. This is not applicable if your child is currently deviated to a school outside of your residence attendance area.