Dist. 204 to vote on moving 180 students to ease crowding

  • May Watts Elementary School in Naperville is one of two buildings considered too crowded by Indian Prairie Unit District 204 officials. Board members could vote Tuesday to move roughly 180 students from May Watts and Brooks Elementary to other schools.

    May Watts Elementary School in Naperville is one of two buildings considered too crowded by Indian Prairie Unit District 204 officials. Board members could vote Tuesday to move roughly 180 students from May Watts and Brooks Elementary to other schools. Daniel White | Staff Photographer October 2015

 
 
Posted2/15/2016 5:30 AM

The school board in Indian Prairie Unit District 204 could vote Tuesday to change elementary attendance areas to move roughly 180 students out of overcrowded buildings.

A proposal from administrators would move students in three subdivisions and three more under construction away from Brooks Elementary and May Watts Elementary to ease space constraints. The idea is set for a vote during a meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Crouse Education Center, 780 Shoreline Drive, Aurora.

 

Under the proposal, students in the Ashton Pointe subdivision in Aurora would move from Brooks to Young Elementary and students in the Brittany Springs apartment complex and Carrolwood subdivision in Naperville would shift from May Watts to Owen Elementary.

Residents of three areas under construction -- Metro 59 apartments, Union Square townhouses and Station Boulevard apartments in Aurora -- would be moved from May Watts to Young or Kendall elementary schools, while residents of the future Atwater subdivision in Naperville would remain assigned to Steck Elementary as planned.

Administrators said they've proposed the changes because Brooks and May Watts both have populations over the 675-student capacity the buildings can handle without using art and music spaces as regular classrooms.

"May Watts and Brooks need relief before the start of the fall school year, which is why we are making some minor changes to elementary boundaries now," board President Lori Price said.

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Roughly 100 students would be shifted away from May Watts, and about 80 would move out of Brooks under the plan, which would allow fifth-graders to finish at their current schools if their parents drive them to class.

Some parents are expressing support for the proposed changes, but others are concerned about longer bus rides and children no longer attending their "neighborhood school."

More boundary adjustments could be around the corner in the coming years -- especially as development of Atwater, Metro 59, Union Square and Station Boulevard continues to bring new residents.

"We are still seeing development in some areas, so we'd like to be able to wait to see how that all shakes out before making more changes," Price said. "We don't like to move students unless there is a need and we don't know for sure what those needs are yet."

Before the vote, the school board is expected to hear details about the plan during a workshop at 5 p.m.

Crowding: More adjustments could be around the corner

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