MAP: These are the Austin ISD school changes proposals that could impact South Austin campuses

Joslin Elementary School could close through Austin ISD's school changes process.

Joslin Elementary School could close through Austin ISD's school changes process.

Two South Austin campuses could close and 16 others could offer new programs or experience boundary changes through Austin ISD’s school changes plan. A draft of the plan was released Sept. 5.

Scenarios for South Austin show Palm and Joslin Elementary schools could close if approved by the board on Nov. 18. Expanded programs include a new health sciences program at Bowie High School and its feeder schools, while boundary changes are expected to impact Kiker, Baranoff, Boone, Cowan and Kocurek Elementary schools.

Director of Community Engagement Celso Baez told Community Impact Newspaper that some scenario options “address systemic changes to the district as a whole,” while others are campus specific or community based, but “ultimately they all impact the student.”

The following map shows all schools in South Austin. Click on a school to read details from the draft scenarios that could impact that campus.



 

Nicole Conley, AISD chief of business and operations, said at a news conference Sept. 6 that the savings in deferred maintenance on buildings that would be closing would total $240 million. She said that money is equivalent to about $350 on an average tax payer’s tax bill, and could be reinvested into other campuses and programs across the district.

For schools that close but had bond funds attached to them for improvements, Operations Officer Matias Segura said those funds would likely follow the student population to invest in their new campuses.

AISD spokesperson Cristina Nguyen said the scenarios show a “wealth of programming that is going to be infused into our schools.”

“Yes, schools will close and facilities will be repurposed for community use or other things, but there are some really great opportunities for our students that are going to really going to help close achievement gaps and get our students to opportunities later in life,” she said.

The majority of campuses that close will be repurposed for either district or other uses. Some could be converted into affordable or workforce housing developments.

“We heard resoundingly from the community that if a school is to no longer be functioning as a school that the number one preference would be to see affordable housing,” Community Engagement Coordinator Ali Ghilarducci said. “In every region we heard that loud and clear. We don't necessarily know how many sites will be able to repurpose but I know that we will look at that as the number one option for a number of our sites.”

Baez said he doesn’t want the district “to kick the can down the road any longer.”

“We want to address [problems] by way of these scenarios,” he said.
By Nicholas Cicale
Nick has been with Community Impact Newspaper since 2016, working with the Lake Travis-Westlake and Southwest Austin-Dripping Springs editions. He previously worked as a reporter in Minnesota and earned a degree from Florida State University.


MOST RECENT

Photo of the downtown metro station
Expanded MetroRail station opens in Austin's downtown

Captial Metro hosted a grand opening for the new station Oct. 19.

Meanwhile Brewing Co.'s bar will offer mixed cocktails as well as beer. (Courtesy Meanwhile Brewing Co.)
Support Cobalt Blue Salon’s Cut For A Cure, two new bars open and more Southwest Austin business news

From bars to hair salons, learn about the latest Southwest Austin and Dripping Springs business news here.

Photo of a "for sale" sign in front of a house
Austin home sales are on the comeback after bottoming out in early spring

Low inventory and a delayed summer boom in home sales resulted in high sales for Austin in September.

The public-access lagoon will serve as the centerpiece for more than 1 million square feet of commercial development, including a full-service hotel and conference center planned for the property. (Rendering courtesy city of Leander)
'Game changer' development with lagoon coming to Leander and more top Central Texas news

Read the most popular news from the Austin area from the past week.

Austin City Council unanimously supported aiming its local stimulus package toward the long-term viability of local at-risk businesses. (Courtesy ATXN)
Austin City Council wants limited local stimulus package to help small businesses outlast pandemic, not just pay rent

Austin's mayor said he wants businesses helped by the program to be better off than they were before the pandemic.

The public-access lagoon will serve as the centerpiece for more than 1 million square feet of commercial development, including a full-service hotel and conference center planned for the property. (Rendering courtesy city of Leander)
4-acre lagoon coming to Leander and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Austin area.

With the coronavirus pandemic still active across the country, traditional fall activities could be seen as risky in 2020. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Planning to trick or treat this year? Local doctors weigh in on dangers, suggestions for fall activities

With the coronavirus pandemic still active across the country, traditional fall activities could be seen as risky in 2020.

4th Tap Brewing Co-Op
Celebrate the Great American Beer Festival at these 17 Austin-area breweries

More than a dozen Austin-area breweries are participating in the Great American Beer Festival's virtual celebration this year.

Easy Tiger South Lamar will officially open its doors Oct. 16. (Courtesy Easy Tiger)
Easy Tiger set to make its South Austin debut Oct. 16

Easy Tiger Bake Shop & Beer Garden is ready to launch its newest spot south of the Colorado River.

The Upper Brushy Creek Water Control and Improvement District issued an $85 million bond proposal to fund several flood safety projects, including a new dam and drainage improvement efforts. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Voting at P. Terry's and possible new dams: Central Texas election news

Read recent election stories from Central Texas.

Austin ISD trustees met for a board meeting in person Oct. 12, although the public was only permitted to participate virtually. (Courtesy Austin ISD)
About 11% of Austin ISD students return to campuses during district's first phase of reopening

Although students are back in the classroom, more changes could be coming at the secondary level by November.