County to hold 2 forums on new school boundaries

SUWANEE - The community will have the chance this week to address the Gwinnett County Board of Education about the proposed boundaries for several new schools opening in the next two years.

Public forums are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday in the Board Room of the Instructional Support Center at 437 Old Peachtree Road N.W. in Suwanee.

Tuesday's meeting is for residents speaking about the proposed boundaries for the schools within the Grayson, Archer, North Gwinnett and Lanier clusters. Existing schools affected by the proposals are North Gwinnett High, Lanier Middle, Riverside Elementary, Sugar Hill Elementary, Sycamore Elementary, Grayson High, McConnell Middle, Cooper Elementary, Grayson Elementary, Lovin Elementary, Pharr Elementary, Central Gwinnett High, Richards Middle, Simonton Elementary, Winn Holt Elementary, Dacula High, Dacula Middle, Alcova Elementary and Harbins Elementary.

Thursday's meeting is for those speaking about the proposed boundaries in the Mill Creek and Mountain View clusters, as well as the attendance zone for Rosebud Elementary School. Existing schools affected by the proposals are Mill Creek High, Jones Middle, Osborne Middle, Duncan Creek Elementary, Fort Daniel Elementary, Freeman's Mill Elementary, Ivy Creek Elementary, Collins Hill High, Creekland Middle, Dyer Elementary, McKendree Elementary, Rock Springs Elementary, Taylor Elementary, Walnut Grive Elementary, Dacula Elementary, Magill Elementary and Norton Elementary.

Anyone wishing to speak can sign up immediately before the meeting. Because the forums are scheduled to end at 9 p.m., comments will be limited to three minutes, said Sloan Roach, spokeswoman for Gwinnett County Public Schools. Large groups are encouraged to designate a spokesperson to address the board, she said.

The district has made three changes to the boundaries originally proposed last month. Those changes include:

' A suggestion to send all children from the Hamilton Mill area to the new Puckett's Mill Elementary. Originally, about 300 children from that community were slated to attend Fort Daniel Elementary.

' A suggestion to further relieve overcrowding in Norton Elementary by sending about 300 additional students to the new Rosebud Elementary School.

' A suggestion to continue sending a neighborhood with five students to Grayson Elementary, so bus drivers can avoid crossing U.S. Highway 78.

Maps of the proposals, which reflect the above changes, are available on the school district's Web site at www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us.

The Board of Education will vote next month on the district's boundary recommendations.