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County-Wide Community Forum
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  1. County-WideCommunity Forum WELCOME Our Children, Our Communities www.knoxschools.info

  2. Agenda • Welcome (Bob Wolfenbarger) • Introduction • Organizers • Ground Rules • Productive and Respectful • Time Constraints • Format

  3. Agenda • Why are we here • The process is flawed, therefore the result will be flawed • Goals and Objectives • Stop the current rezoning process • Initiate a new process that includes parents and communities

  4. Agenda • What can we do? • Show up at the school board meetings in force, with signs • April 30, 2007 - 5:00 pm City/County Bldg • May 2, 2007 - 5:00 pm City/County Bldg • Contact your school board members • Sign up to participate in the new process

  5. Agenda • Public Input (Doug McCaughan) • Survey forms to be presented to the school board • Addressing your concerns • Identifying important issues • Questions and comments

  6. Survey • What is your zip code?__________________ • Please check your top 3 concerns with school re-zoning: • ___ Keeping feeder schools together • ___ Overcrowded/under-utilized schools • ___ Travel time and distance • ___ Lack of supported data/alternative plans • ___ Membership in teams and clubs • ___ Effects on property values • ___ Curriculum and class offerings • ___ Lack of community involvement in planning • ___ Attending school of choice • ___ School budgets • If you have unanswered questions about re-zoning, write them on the back of this paper.

  7. Agenda • Strategy (Lisa Starbuck) • How did we get here? • Top down planning, squeaky wheels • Bottom up planning, get community buy-in • Comprehensive planning approach • Development and infrastructure - it’s all related

  8. Agenda • Action Plan (Tamara Shepherd) • Talking Points from School Board Handout • Stated goal: To relieve crowding and projected growth at Farragut and Karns High Schools. • Counterargument: Per MPC’s *High School Enrollment Projections,” April 2007, proposal allows Farragut High School to grow to 2380 students again in first eight years of plan (by 2016), and allows Karns High School to operate at maximum enrollment of only 1783 students (81% of available 2200 seats) over same time period. • Stated goal: To address facility utilization and scheduling challenges at Central, Bearden, West and Powell High Schools. • Counterargument: Per MPC’s “Partnership for Educational Facilities Assessment” (PEFA) study, October 2006, Central High’s slight overcrowding into two portable buildings should “self-correct” due to a projected 4% decline in enrollment. Powell High lacks any overcrowding problem and is projected to experience a 15% decline in enrollment.

  9. Agenda • Action Plan (Tamara Shepherd) • Talking Points from School Board Handout • Stated goal: To create a viable student population at Hardin Valley High. • Counterargument: Although KCS promotes the proposed Comprehensive High School Zone Plan as one designed to make better use of existing facilities, MPC’s PEFA study, above, indicates that HVHS will operate at maximum enrollment of only 1440 students (65% of available 2200 seats) over the first eight years of plan. • Stated goal: To maintain a viable student population at Austin-East High. • Counterargument: No rezoning of A-E students is advisable until recommendations of Magnet School Task Force are in hand. Already, Task Force has determined 1) that existing strategies at KCS magnet schools, including A-E, have failed, and 2) that a review of strategies is in order.

  10. Agenda • Action Plan (Tamara Shepherd) • Talking Points from School Board Handout • Stated goal: To set the stage for middle school rezoning, particularly with respect to providing better options to create educationally sound feeder patterns. • Counterargument: KCS has asserted that Northwest Middle is in need of this attention, and that problems exist in some west Knox County schools, as well. They have not, however, offered any explanation of either the specific needs or the recommended remedies for these affected school communities. • Stated goal: To clean up transportation problems created by road infrastructure changes and improvements. • Counterargument: KCS has not offered any explanation of the specific obstacles in this regard, nor have they justified the longer and/or less safe commutes their proposal would impose for many students.

  11. Agenda • Action Plan (Tamara Shepherd) • Talking Points from School Board Handout • Stated goal: The most accessible available seats are in the northwest part of the county. • Counterargument: If students must be rezoned into the northwest part of the county from outlying areas, KCS must explain why so many seats were created in an area not in need of so much building capacity. • Related Helps • MPC’s “High School Enrollment Projections,” April 2007 (at the Knoxville News-Sentinel site): http://web.knoxnews.com/pdf/0412zone_enrollment.pdf • MPC’s “Partnership for Education Facilities Assessment,” October 2006 (at the Metropolitan Planning Commission site): http://www.knoxmpc.org/pefa/index.htm

  12. Agenda • Alternative Processes (Jamey Dobbs) • Don’t reinvent the wheel • Other communities have done this • We want an inclusive process

  13. Agenda • Community Alliance • Sign up forms • Web site signup www.knoxschools.info • Neighborhood organization • Ask your neighbors, families and friends to get involved in our schools

  14. Conclusion • Action Items • Ask School Board to VOTE NO on the current rezoning proposal • Call or e-mail School Board members • Show up with your friends and neighbors at the School Board meetings on April 30 and May 2 • Sign up to be included in future processes to improve our schools