The Park City School District Board of Education meeting on Tuesday focused master planning efforts which have been underway since last October. Consultants, NV5 and GSBS have compiled some 600 comments and a year’s worth of meeting data into three overarching recommendations.
Park City Board of Education Vice President, Erin Grady says in addressing early child-hood education, the community made it clear they don’t want to re-draw school district boundaries. Moving McPolin Elementary farther away from the high school, but staying on the Kearns campus, is under consideration. Park City’s elementary schools would all need to be expanded if district wide preschool is offered.
“Kind of looking at if we would like as a community, to have and early learning center centralized in town. Still having the kindergarten and pre-school levels at the local elementary as well. But I don’t think we want to redistrict at all. I think people want to keep the schools where they are, similar locations.”
The community supports aligning 6th through 8th grades in either one or two middle schools. As Superintendent Jill Gildea points out, there’s a lot of benefit to bringing kids together in sixth grade but they are looking for public input on this issue.
“Brings the kids together at a young age where everybody in the district joins sixth grade together. And there’s such excitement at Ecker Hill. And you can really feel that in the school. So, the question then is it a six, seven, eight building or does it remain two smaller six, seven, eight options.”
Gildea says the community wants ninth graders back in the high school but it means the high school would have nearly 1900 students. She says there are ways to schedule ninth grade students, so the school doesn’t feel too big for them as they transition into high school.
“What I heard last night and again is pretty affirming, is that as we look at those years of transition, sixth grade and ninth grade concept of keeping those kids in kind of what we would call a protective schedule, so your rotation would have teachers in common…”
A series of five round table open houses are scheduled on Monday and Tuesday of next week. They’ll be held at Hugo Coffee in the basin and the Park City Library.
“There will be representatives from our consulting company and also representatives from the school board there. And really, it’s an opportunity, it’s an open table. We want people to come and voice, look over what’s been said. And we really want to hear everybody’s opinion. It’s really important we get the community out and we get as many voices as possible.”
The master planning committee and consultants hope to have a final draft to the school board for consideration during the December board meeting scheduled for December 17th.
A schedule and locations of the meeting can be found at http://www.pcschools.us/