Education

Fayette Schools redistricting committee reassigns Greenbrier

Fayette County Public Schools central offices at 701 East Main Street, Lexington.
Fayette County Public Schools central offices at 701 East Main Street, Lexington. Herald-Leader

The Fayette County Public Schools redistricting committee continued to change attendance boundaries Wednesday, including reassigning the Greenbrier neighborhood to a new elementary school east of Interstate 75 off Polo Club Boulevard.

While the committee has finished "locking in" its redrawing of attendance boundaries, committee chairman Alan Stein said after the meeting that "no one should go to bed thinking the process is over."

At 4:30 p.m. Thursday at Central Office, the committee will start to review more than 30 scenarios involving school feeder patterns; that is, how elementary schools feed into middle schools, and how middle schools feed into high schools. Tweaks could be made at that point. Within a few weeks, the committee will give its recommendations to the school board, and more changes could be in store.

Still, Markey Hutchinson, a resident of Greenbrier off Winchester Road, was excited that the committee decided Wednesday to send students in her neighborhood to the new elementary.

"I have two children and would love to take advantage of the closer proximity and public school education," she said

At least nine students in Greenbrier attend public school. Thirty-two attend private school, and about 20 of those attend Lexington Christian Academy, district attendance analyst Bob Joice said.

Hutchinson's son is entering kindergarten in the fall. She was one of several residents who came to the meeting Wednesday wearing green badges with the word "Greenbrier" on them to let the committee know of their concerns, mostly that they wanted to go to the new school. Greenbrier is now assigned to Dixie Magnet Elementary. In January, the committee decided to reassign Greenbrier to the new elementary off Polo Club Boulevard. The committee recently moved the neighborhood back to Dixie at the request of the principal, who was concerned about socioeconomic balance. On Wednesday, the committee reversed that decision.

The district is redrawing school boundaries in anticipation of the construction of a new high school set to open in 2017 and two new elementary schools set to open in 2016.

In other changes, a rural area with nine students in it who currently attend Rosa Parks Elementary and had been moved to James Lane Allen a few weeks ago was moved back to Rosa Parks on Wednesday.

The homes' proximity to Rosa Parks was a key reason, Stein said.

Reducing the number of children who attend Rosa Parks has been one of the committee's toughest challenges, because so many students live close to the school, he said.

In another move, some children at Booker T. Washington who live along Georgetown Street and who had been reassigned to Harrison Elementary under one proposal were kept at Booker T. Washington.

Some neighborhoods along Price Road were moved from Booker T. Washington to a new elementary on Georgetown Road. Committee member James Brown said he made that recommendation to help curb overcrowding at Booker T. Washington, so that class sizes might be smaller.

The moves will somewhat improve capacity and socioeconomic balance at Booker T. Washington, Stein said.

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