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Old Hundred Elementary redistricting plan vote deferred until February

Posted at 6:09 PM, Jan 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-08 21:39:52-05

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Chesterfield school leaders were expected to vote on a redistricting plan Tuesday evening to ease overcrowding at several elementary schools, but that vote has been put on  hold until February

This comes after an afternoon work session with school leaders.

The vote was designed to reduce overcrowding at multiple elementary schools while also deciding which neighborhoods would attend the new Old Hundred Elementary school, which is set to open this fall.

Multiple redistricting plans discussed by board members over the past several months brought outcries from the Watermill community, which would have seen half their elementary students attend the new school, while the other half would continue to attend Swift Creek Elementary School.

During the work session, School Board members decided that staff would need to redo the numbers and hold off on Tuesday night’s vote.

The vote is still officially on the agenda for Tuesday's school board meeting at 6:30 p.m., but it is expected to be tabled until February’s meeting.

That would allow staff to re-do the numbers to better determine growth in the county for the next five years and move students accordingly to reduce overcrowding.

Parent says redistricting plan doesn't make any sense

Marcin Flisiaks' son attends an elementary schools miles from his home, with the new school only a mile away.

His neighborhood, though very close to the new school is not included in the new redistricting plan.

"When you look at the map and where the County builds the new school, the closest community to the Old Hundred Elementary is our community, Watermill," said Flisiak.

The Edgewater neighborhood, which is further away is on the re-districting list.

When Flisiak is asked if that makes sense he says "No, to me, no,"

Flisiak is like other parents who say the redistricting plan has not been transparent, has divided up neighborhoods and neighbors and simply makes no sense.

They would like to see the plans re-drawn.

Tim Bullis, Executive Director, Communications and Community Engagement for Chesterfield County Schools sent CBS 6 this statement:

"In holding four community meetings and receiving many emails, staff received a lot of input regarding the initial proposal. In receiving that feedback, staff looked at a variety of scenarios based on many requests from families. In hindsight, we may have tried to make too many people happy at the expense of an initial proposal that made operational sense and provided the most future growth potential for the school division. Therefore, staff moved back to a proposal that is closer to the initial recommendation – one that better utilizes existing seats at Swift Creek Elementary and allows for growth at Old Hundred Elementary."