Posted Feb. 22 at 9:09 p.m.
Leander ISD school board members reviewed a draft of a potential middle school attendance zoning scenario for the 2020-21 academic year at a meeting Feb. 21.
With the opening of Danielson Middle School scheduled for 2020, the district is considering changes to all middle school attendance zones. Danielson Middle School will be located at 1061 Collaborative Way, Leander, near Glenn High School, according to LISD’s website.
Attendance zones determine which schools students will attend based on where they live. The draft scenario presented to the board at the Feb. 21 meeting highlights the community’s desire to emphasize school proximity and a consistent feeder pattern that minimizes the splitting of middle schools among high schools.
“There are two realities that we all face in Leander ISD here in the next two years,” LISD Chief Communications Officer Corey Ryan said. “One is that students are coming … [and] the other reality is that we are opening another middle school in 2020.”
The offered scenario would only split two of the nine middle schools among high schools. Students from Stiles Middle School would be split almost evenly between Rouse High School and Vista Ridge High School, and students who attend Leander Middle School would be split almost evenly between Glenn High School and Leander High School.
The draft would also create three pure feeder patterns for all students of Cedar Park Middle to attend Cedar Park High, all Canyon Ridge Middle students to attend Vandegrift High, and all Danielson Middle students to attend Glenn High.
LISD gathered community feedback on priorities for the attendance zoning process from Jan. 25-Feb. 3 and completed a second community survey Feb. 12-Feb. 17.
In the survey, respondents were most concerned with the school’s proximity to home, selecting feeder patterns that minimize splitting schools as students advance, relieving overcrowded schools and balancing enrollments, Ryan said.
Place 3 trustee Pamela Waggoner said while she recognized the community members' desire to simplify feeder patterns, she was concerned with unintended consequences of overcrowded schools and how it would affect student learning, ability to participate in sports and lunch times.
“I know parents wholeheartedly want their kids to go to these schools with their friends, but these kids are going to miss out on so much potential from academics to lunch time to open space to sport when we overcrowd these schools just to match our feeder patterns,” Waggoner said.
Ryan said the district plans to put the scenario on Thoughtexchange, the survey platform the district uses to receive input, for further feedback. District officials plan to return to the board with the results during its March 7 meeting, where trustees may approve a draft scenario. After public forums and additional board input, a final proposal could be presented to the LISD board Apr. 18 and approved May 2, according to district documents.