Schools mull new districts
Proposed map released today

SUWANEE - Gwinnett County Public Schools is releasing today the proposed attendance zones for five elementary schools and one middle school opening in August.

The redistricting will affect the boundary lines for 29 existing schools and four clusters, said Greg Stanfield, the district's planning director.

Maps of the proposed boundaries will be available today at affected schools and on the school district's Web site, www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us.

"We want to balance enrollment to have the best distribution of students," spokeswoman Sloan Roach said. "In this case, we are opening six new schools, and the redistricting process will allow us to create the student population for those schools.

The public is invited to provide input on the proposed boundaries. Input forms, available at schools and online, are due by Nov. 4.

Creating proposed boundary lines for the schools has created a "domino effect" in some clusters, Stanfield said.

Some proposed changes are as follows:

· In the Peachtree Ridge cluster, Burnette Elementary will take some students from Parsons Elementary. Parsons, in turn, will take some students from Mason Elementary.

· In the Central Gwinnett cluster, Jenkins Elementary will take students from Lawrenceville Elementary and Simonton Elementary. Simonton will take some students from Winn Holt Elementary.

· In the Meadowcreek cluster, Ferguson Elementary will take students from five elementary schools: Hopkins, Minor, Corley, Kanoheda and Benefield. The latter four schools are in the Berkmar cluster, but the students who get rezoned to Ferguson will attend Radloff Middle and Meadowcreek High. A small section will also move from Benefield to Kanoheda.

· In the Shiloh cluster, Snell Elementary will draw from Partee Elementary, Annistown Elementary and Norton Elementary. Norton is located in the South Gwinnett cluster, so students who are moved to Snell will attend Shiloh Middle and Shiloh High. Partee will relieve overcrowding at Annistown and Shiloh Elementary, while Annistown will take some students from Shiloh Elementary. Shiloh Elementary will relieve some overcrowding at Centerville Elementary.

· In the South Gwinnett cluster, because some students are shifting to Snell Elementary, Norton will relieve overcrowding at Britt, and Britt will take some students from Magill Elementary. The new Midway Middle school will relieve Snellville Middle. Its feeder schools will be Magill and Rosebud Elementary.

· In the North Gwinnett cluster, Roberts Elementary will take students from Level Creek Elementary and Suwanee Elementary. Suwanee Elementary will relieve Level Creek Elementary, and Level Creek will relieve Riverside Elementary.

About 9,000 students will be affected by the changes, half the number affected when the district drew the lines for the Archer, Mountain View and Lanier clusters, Stanfield said.

"We realize that change isn't easy, but we also know the opening of a school is an exciting time and is something to celebrate," Roach said. "We really seek to find the best solutions as far as balancing enrollment."

School boundary committees will review the public input and submit recommendations for changes in November.

The public can address the Gwinnett County Board of Education about the proposed boundaries during a public hearing from 7 to 9 p.m. Nov. 19 at the Instructional Support Center at 437 Old Peachtree Road N.W. in Suwanee. The board will vote on the final recommendations during its regular monthly business meeting on Dec. 10.

SideBar: At a glance

New Schools Opening in 2010

· Burnette Elementary School, 3221 Burnette Road, Suwanee

· Ferguson Elementary School, 1755 Centerview Drive, Duluth

· Jenkins Elementary School, 12 Village Way, Lawrenceville

· Roberts Elementary School, 251 Buford Highway, Suwanee

· Snell Elementary School, 4521 Centerville Highway, Snellville

· Midway Middle School, 3800 Brushy Fork Road, Loganville

· Lanier High School*, 918 Buford Highway, Buford

* Redistricting completed last year.