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This Week: Public Meetings About Wayzata School Boundaries (UPDATED)

The Wayzata School District will have public meetings tonight, tomorrow night and Monday, Nov. 5.

(Editor's Note: The following has been updated to reflect new scenarios to be presented to the public this week.)

The Wayzata School District will hold three public meetings to get community member feedback about future school attendance boundary changes.

All three meetings are from 7 to 9 p.m. in the media center at Wayzata Central Middle School. The first meeting is tonight, Monday, Oct. 29, the second meeting is 7-9 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 30, and the third meeting is Monday, Nov. 5.

The district's boundaries reach into the cities of Plymouth, Medina, Wayzata, Minnetonka, Orono, Corcoran, Medicine Lake and Maple Grove. All but one of the district's schools are in Plymouth; West Middle School is in Wayzata. 

At its Oct. 22 work session, the Wayzata School Board discussed the process and several scenarios that will be presented to the community at the public meetings. Attendance boundary changes for elementary schools are the main focus.

Consultant Dennis Cheesebrow with Teamworks International presented the methodology, decision-making process and guiding change document put together by an internal team of district staff to the board at its work session.

The board agreed on changes to the guiding change document to make sure priorities identified were clear for a public presentation. The consultant's presentation also included charts of each elementary school's enrollment projections and current attendance area estimates.

Maps of the proposed scenarios for possible boundary changes accompany this article. The maps are color coded by elementary school attendance areas and by neighborhoods with stars indicating proposed future housing development.

New Proposed Scenarios (updated information)

The Oct. 22 work session originally had three scenarios. Originally, Scenario 1 and 2 were similar with a slight difference in how Greenwood and Kimberly Lane boundaries could be changed. Scenario 3 showed no changes with Plymouth Creek and Kimberly Lane otherwise the rest of the elementary schools' boundaries would change.

Since the work session now what will be presented at the public meetings are two newer scenarios. The new Scenario 3 is a slightly modified version of the original scenario 3 andan all new scenario called Scenario 4.

Below is a list of changes to neighborhoods under each proposed scenario, none of which are set in stone at this time. (You can see these changes on the maps accompanying this article.)

(Newer) Scenario 3

• Neighborhoods 54, 55 and 56 would change from Birchview to Sunset Hill.

• Neighborhood 42 would change from Oakwood to Gleason Lake.

• Neighborhoods 8, 9, 10, 11A, 12 and 13would change from Greenwood to Oakwood.

• Neighborhoods 2 and 3 would change from Greenwood to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhood 30 would change from Plymouth Creek to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhoods 33 and 34 would change from Plymouth Creek to Oakwood.

(Newest) Scenario 4

• Neighborhoods 38 and 39 would change from Plymouth Creek to Sunset Hill.

• Neighborhood 42 would change from Oakwood to Gleason Lake.

• Neighborhoods 8, 9, 10, 11A, 12 and 13 would change from Greenwood to Oakwood.

• Neighborhoods 2 and 3 would change from Greenwood to Kimberly Lane.

•  Neighborhood 30 would change from Plymouth Creek to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhoods 33 and 34 would change from Plymouth Creek to Oakwood.

Original Three Scenarios (from Oct. 22 meeting)

Scenario 1

•Neighborhoods 54, 55 and 56 (homes on/near Medicine Lake, east of 494) would change from Birchview to Sunset Hill. 

• Neighborhood 7 (homes in the northeast near/on County Road 47 and north of Hwy 55) would change from Greenwood to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhoods 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 12 and 13 (homes in northwest near/on Hwy 55) would change from Greenwood to Gleason Lake.

• Neighborhoods 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 23 (homes north of Hwy 55 and on/near County Road 47) would change from Kimberly Lane to Greenwood.

• Neighborhoods 30, 31 and 32 (homes on/near County Road 47 and closer to 494) would change from Plymouth Creek to Kimberly Lane.

Scenario 2

• Neighborhoods 54, 55 and 56 would change from Birchview to Sunset Hill.

• Neighborhood 72 (homes south of 394 and west of 494 in southern area) would change from Gleason Lake to Birchview.

• Neighborhoods 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 12 and 13 would change from Greenwood to Gleason Lake.

• Neighborhoods 2 and 3 (homes north of Hwy 55 and on/near County Road 47) would change from Greenwood to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhoods 30, 31 and 32 would change from Plymouth Creek to Greenwood.

Scenario 3

• Neighborhoods 54, 55 and 56 would change from Birchview to Sunset Hill.

• Neighborhood 42 would change from Oakwood to Gleason Lake.

• Neighborhoods 11A, 8, 9, 10, 12 and 13 would change from Greenwood to Oakwood.

• Neighborhoods 2 and 3 would change from Greenwood to Kimberly Lane.

• Neighborhood 33 would change from Plymouth Creek to Oakwood.

Though the board did not come to a consensus on which scenario was most preferred, each gave input on wanting balance and stability for the district as well as not having long bus rides for students. The School Board has not made any final decisions on what boundaries will be. 

The scenarios were laid out from work by an internal staff team that recently began meeting to establish a process for tackling attendance boundary issues.

At the public meetings, attendees will be grouped and asked to present pros, cons and suggestions and/or changes to the scenarios presented.

(Editor's note: Maps attached and information in this article come from a PowerPoint presentation at the Oct. 22 work session as well as a pdf version of the proposed public input presentation for Oct. 29.)

Dave Haas October 29, 2012 at 02:47 PM
Stephanie - According to documents emailed to parents last evening - there are now only 2 scenarios that they are considering - A slightly modified scenario 3 (More Neighborhoods North of Schmit Lake Road moving to Oakwood) and a new scenario 4. (which is basically Scenario 3 with 3 neighborhoolds staying at Birchview and 2 neighborhoods from PC moving to Sunset. Either way, I can't imagine the parents in those neighborhoods being happy one being bused past 2 - 3 schools to their "new" school. And the other being in sight of Plymouth Creek and having their kids bused to Sunset.
Stefanie Briggs October 29, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Thanks for the heads up Dave! I have contacted the district so I can update the story! Hope people can make it to the public meetings.
Sharon Gratigny November 01, 2012 at 02:28 PM
Currently neighborhoods 38&39 are 1.3 miles or less to Plymouth Creek, with Scenario 4 distance will increase to 5.3-6.0 miles, that is a 300% increase. The proposal is splitting the neighborhood, busing small children over an hour a day in rush hour across two highways. Crossing over 494 to get to school is a big divider and at the end of day with the stop lights etc it will greatly affect time to return home. Elementary school rely heavily on parent involvement and this will decrease significantly if home, work, school are so far from each other. Please look at the maps!
Dave Haas November 01, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Sharon - I agree wholeheartedly - I was at the meeting Tuesday night and the overwhelming majority of the people there did not like either plan being put forward. The neighborhoods that would move to Sunset in option 3 are opposed to it because they are heavily invested in Birchview. They are united in support for option 4, which means moving 38 / 39 to Sunset. I know that the table I was at, as well as others asked why they can't leave 38/39 and the Birchview neighborhoods where they are at, since the impact on Plymouth Creek is minimal as is the impact on Sunset / Birchview - and neither of those schools is significantly under / over populated at this point. Dave

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