Meeting at high school of elementary concern

Meeting at high school of elementary concern

MADISON, AL (WAFF)- A new school, overcrowding, and demographic shifts are three of the main reasons school leaders in Madison are making rezoning plans.

Thursday night a town hall meeting allowed concerned parents to voice their concerns over changes that aren't quite set in stone.

Dr. Dee Fowler says projections for the start of the 2009 school year show not only the city's largest graduating class, but also the largest number of kindergarteners.

Abigail Strong, has a soon-to-be kindergartner.

"We have a school in our neighborhood, and our children won't be able to go to school in our neighborhood," said Strong.

Concerned parents, city leaders, and school board members are on hand to discuss new zoning lines for the City of Madisons Elementary Schools.

Madison City School Board President Sue Helms said the rearrangements that are taking place are to make room for Mill Creek Elementary, which is set to open in August.

"It's built for 900 people, someone has to go there, they don't just remarkably show up," said Helms.

Proximity was a primary concern for many parents not wishing for further travel.

Helms said distance falls second.

"Socio-economic factors are certainly the first item we look at when we rezone. That's basically free and reduced lunches," Helms said.

Superintendant Dr. Dee Fowler said some elementary schools are over-crowded, others under-utilized.

While the superintendant gave his presentation, others, like Cynthia Sanders, outlined their own concerns for their children.

"My child doesn't want to leave his friends, he likes his school, likes his teacher, and he's very unsure about what's happening right now, so he's a little upset," said Sanders.

Dr. Fowler may or may not make any changes to his outlines, he'll present his final plans to the school board.

The school board will vote on those plans in April.