Kaitlyn Ahlstrom boards a Moffat County School District bus Tuesday at East Elementary. If the Moffat County School Board passes a plan to redistrict the schools, 330 students would have to change schools next year. Moffat County School District administrators met with parents Tuesday night to answer questions about the plan.

Photo by Hans Hallgren

Kaitlyn Ahlstrom boards a Moffat County School District bus Tuesday at East Elementary. If the Moffat County School Board passes a plan to redistrict the schools, 330 students would have to change schools next year. Moffat County School District administrators met with parents Tuesday night to answer questions about the plan.

Some parents displeased with proposed redistricting plan

If the Moffat County School Board passes a proposed redistricting plan, there will be a number of upset parents driving in from west of town.

More than a dozen parents came to ask questions or to share thoughts and concerns about the plan to shift students from Ridgeview Elementary to the newly renovated Craig Elementary School during a parent advisory committee meeting Tuesday night at Ridgeview.

"It's completely asinine," said Lynnette Running, who has one student attending Ridgeview. "Most people who will have to move will drive by Ridgeview on their way into town. It doesn't make sense for someone coming in from Maybell to have to keep driving into town or to watch Ridgeview as they drive in."

Pete Bergmann, Moffat County School District superintendent, said the change would be difficult for a lot of families, but that the plan to redistrict was completely necessary.

"Change is difficult for everyone - parents, teachers, students," Bergmann said. "But it's important for us to recognize change when it's placed on the table. We had to choose the change that would produce the positive results for the students of Moffat County. We had to follow the route that was most conducive to the most happiness for the most people."

There were few options that the School District could have explored, Bergmann said. He said there is no room inside the school for expanding classes, unless modular units are added.

Bergmann said the plan to redistrict would move more than 300 students next year and that the best way for Ridgeview Elementary to move forward in one of the fastest growing regions of Craig is to have a shift in the lines.

"We had to take a long look at the changes and ask ourselves, 'What would be the best for the most students?' And the administrative team, the school board and the SAC decided that this would be the best option," he said.

Bergmann added that Ridgeview would have the most changes because of its size.

"Ridgeview is the smallest school in the district physically, and there is very little room for growth," the superintendent said. "There's one extra room, but if we wanted to expand the school, we'd need to put up modular classrooms outside.

"CES has the most room in the district, and we want to see CES become a three track school," he said. A three-track school has three sections of each grade.

Bergmann said that Sunset and East Elementary schools are "50-50 schools" because there are either two or three sections for each grade.

"We had to change the boundaries to balance the enrollment at the schools. Right now, Ridgeview is bursting at the seams," Bergmann said. "This way, we can manage to keep quality class sizes, but when we looked at our projected enrollments (for next year), we had to change the boundaries."

In February 2008, there were 234 students enrolled at Ridgeview, Bergmann said. A year later, the total had increased to 280 but "not even including the 20 or so kids we've picked up since Christmas," he added.

Parent Jeana Wamble, who would have one student attending Ridgeview next year, said that parents in the center of town should have to change because the commute is much shorter within the city limits.

She said that because she lives further outside of town, the drive to Ridgeview is only five minutes, but a change to CES would add another 10 minutes.

"(The redistricting plan is) totally illogical - it might be the best plan, but it's not logical," she said.

Running said that even with her child at Ridgeview, the bus ride still can take more than an hour. She said that the change in schools would add more time on a bus for her daughter.

"It's frustrating," she said. "She gets out of school at 3:25 p.m., and she doesn't actually get home until 4:20 to 4:30 p.m., assuming the road is in good condition."

Bergmann said that there could be a better way, but he hasn't found it yet.

"Something different could work, but at the end of the day, 330 people are going to a different school next year," he said.

The Moffat County School Board will make a decision regarding the redistricting lines during its March 26 meeting.

Comments

grannyrett 5 years, 4 months ago

Mrs. Running--Looks like if you were expecting sympathy here, you will be disappointed.

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freeman 5 years, 4 months ago

I CAN UNDERSTAND YOUR WORRY OF YOUR KIDS BEING ON A BUS FOR ALMOST AN HOUR,,,BUT,, IT IS NOT THE SCHOOLS FAULT THAT YOU LIVE SO FAR AWAY FROM TOWN,

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redneckgirl 5 years, 4 months ago

You're child isn't going to be going to Ridgeview forever; so by the time your kid gets into 7th grade, he/she ( I don't remember) will be used to the extra excruciating 10 minutes through town.

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grannyrett 5 years, 4 months ago

Your kids aren't the only ones who has had to ride the bus for an hour. Over 40 years ago, when I started riding a bus, we were on it for over an hour. Used to sit and do homework on the way home. Like freeman says. You decided to live so far out of town. Didn't you think about that when you moved where ever it is that you live. Get real--the distance from one school to the other is not that much. I was one of the first class of 7th graders to go into the old junior high school building. How exciting that was. The old high school on Breeze Street was closer. But I was so excited to get to go to a brand new school. This can turn into a very exciting time for your child. Don't make it a real downer.

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lonelyone 5 years, 4 months ago

Why is Mrs. Runnings child not going to school in Maybell?? Have I missed something and the Maybell school is being closed or what??? Or am I just not reading things right at all???

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freeman 5 years, 4 months ago

GRANNYRETT SAID IT,,,,GIVE THE CHILDREN A CHANCE TO GO TO A NEW SCHOOL,,,,NOT TO MANY KIDS WILL EXPERIENCE THAT,,,,,THINK ABOUT YOUR CHILDREN FIRST FOR ONCE,,,I KNOW BEING THE HEAD OF HR AT THE COURTHOUSE FOR THE COUNTY IS MORE CONCERNING THAN YOUR KIDS,,BUT, SEEING HOW YOU LIVE OUT BY MAYBELL,,DO YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THE PROBLEM THEY HAD AT THE COUNTY OFFICE THERE,,,????????????????

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grannyrett 5 years, 4 months ago

Mrs. Running--A school is a school. Your child will learn how to handle problems by watching how you handle them. Show your kid that this will be a new adventure. Show that sometimes we don't get our way, but we can deal with it. Show that this will be a great way to make new friends. If you show your child anger, that will be the way he/she deals with all disappointments in life. It's up to you.

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mustang 5 years, 4 months ago

I agree with the statements above that change can be a good experience for kids. The suggestion that I thought made absolutely no sense in the article was the one stating that the kids that live in town should be relocated because the commute would be shorter than for those who live out of town. When we moved to this town we looked at buying homes out of town, but when it came down to it we bought a home that is centrally located. We have all of our children's schools within walking distance (except for the high school). Where we live busing service to their school is not an option, because we live so close. It would make no sense financially for the school disctrict to move lines in town and send children like those in our neighborhood who live 3 blocks from the school to one further away, so that busing the children would be necessary. Honestly is an extra 5 minutes to get across town all that big of a deal? I could understand it we lived in a large metro area that across town meant an hour long drive, but we live in Craig, I have not found a place here in town that takes more than 10 minutes to get to.

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corky56 5 years, 4 months ago

Mrs Running does not live in Maybell. Actually, she lives about 8 miles west of town. The extra 5-10 minutes will just be the time from the new school to the bus stop. I do feel bad for these people, yes they chose where to live but some of them have daycare in the Ridgeview area because that is where the kids were going. If you have not used daycare in a while it is hard to get good daycare and you just dont want to yank your child out of daycare and put them someplace else, it is very hard and daycare is not easy to find!! I know it all will work out but it will just take time to adjust. Good luck!

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