BROKEN ARROW, Okla. — A debate over rezoning.
About 20 Broken Arrow parents met Thursday night to discuss what they can do to stop a proposed rezoning plan. Sean Scotney’s children currently go to Highland Park Elementary. Under the new plan, they would go to Timber Ridge Elementary. He also said the new plan will split their Forest Ridge community in half.
“With the realignment, they’re cutting up Forest Ridge into pieces and separating the kids," Scotney said. "So, my kids would have to leave their school, go to another school that’s 3.5 miles away instead of within a mile like our current school is.”
The revised boundary affects areas east and north of the Muskogee Turnpike. The district’s Long Range Planning Committee, which is made up of parents from every elementary and middle school, made the changes Tuesday night after getting feedback from the public.
“There were a number of comments regarding distance to Childers Middle School from some parts of town and the conditions of the roads that would be traveled," said Charlie Hannema, director of public relations for Broken Arrow Public Schools.
Hannema said the district has 19,500 students and is growing nearly three percent each year. It is rezoning due to the construction of its 16 elementary schools.
“We’re not going to have massive class sizes, we’re not going to put a class on the stage," Hannema said. "The gym, the cafeteria, the music room can only hold so many people. And so the only choice is to redistrict.”
At the meeting, parents expressed other concerns such as property values possibly going down if they have to change schools. They plan on bringing their concerns to the school board at its next meeting.
“Let Broken Arrow Public School system know that we’re all on the same page, we want what’s best," Scotney said. "But sending our kids to the other side of Broken Arrow to go to school when they’ve got a school in the neighborhood is not acceptable.”
The next school board meeting is Monday, Jan. 13.
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