Norfolk schools redistricting

Norfolk Schools appleNorfolk Public Schools are considering changing school attendance zones and held a public meeting last night on the possibilities. Another meeting is scheduled for tonight at 6:30 at Norview High School. Last night’s meeting was not well-attended; no surprise given that notice was so short. And then there’s this:

The school division plans to post the report today on its website, 

How in the heck are the parents supposed to become informed when the report and proposal (pdf) aren’t available for review? For that matter, how about the fact that they only announced the public meetings a week before the first was held?

NPSMeeting0214Sometimes – ok, a lot of the time – it is frustrating to live in a city which pretends they want citizen involvement and then regularly throw up walls preventing it. There simply is no excuse for such short notice; after all:

The division hired DeJong-Richter, a facilities planning firm, last year to conduct a monthslong demographics study and make recommendations about how to improve facility usage.

Until Norfolk citizens embrace the idea that our schools should be a priority, this kind of thing will continue.

I hear there is yet another effort underway to have an elected school board. I don’t know how the results of this effort will differ from any previous ones. Not enough folks care about it.


8 thoughts on “Norfolk schools redistricting

  1. That’s a really confusing presentation with no explanation about the purpose of each plan. The only one that makes sense is the first one for elementary schools, the rest just seem to be pie in the sky plans for new schools and academy’s that will balance out capacity and utilization without serious reconsideration of the attendance zones. There is no way you can accurately predict new utilization patterns in conjunction with the transformation initiative and the proposed new district wide schools. They need to either fix the existing capacity/utilization problem within the existing framework or completely finalize the transformation initiative plan and then move forward with a completely new study based on those specific parameters.

  2. Even with a weeks notice if you are concerned you will find a way to be at one of the two meetings. My biggest concern is that in the past we have hired consultants which isn’t cheap and then we fail to take the advice of these experts. We have problems and we need to address them and make the necessary changes. I hope Dr. King will make the hard decisions to put Norfolk Public Schools back where they use to be and our city leaders will realize that good schools is the economic engine that drives people to relocate to our city.

    1. I found out about the Tuesday meeting (which I couldn’t attend, anyway, because of my teaching schedule) Tuesday morning. And then there was the snow threat Wednesday evening. I may not be the norm, in that I have a lot on my plate, but a week’s notice isn’t enough for me.

      I’ve not heard how much this consultant was paid, but you’re right: we pay them and then ignore them.

    1. Thank you! I just got around to watching this last night and it confirmed my worst fears. The consultants are great and they have basically told NPS that there are too many unanswered questions for them to make a valid long term solution. Everything is going to have to be redone at most 10 years and probably far, far less. Its so sad to see such a great company hired and not given the tools they need to help us make the best decision possible.

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