Hampton Elementary Community Supports Changes in Action of how BCPS Addresses Overcrowding

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HAMPTON COMMUNITY’S COUNTER-PROPOSAL TO THE PLEASANT PLAINS BOUNDARY STUDY CHOSEN OPTION

Baltimore County is a wonderful place to live. One of the biggest reasons making it so is our public school system. However, in order for a public school system to function optimally, it requires equal investment and value in ALL schools. More specifically for our community, we are advocating for true change for Pleasant Plains Elementary and not a change that puts another school in jeopardy of needing more relief than what assistance they can provide.

Pleasant Plains has been identified as having an overcrowding problem for over five years. We are glad that there is finally attention being brought to the matter. Although changing boundary lines may seem like an easy fix, we are concerned this “temporary relief” will become permanent and BCPS will move on from this problem, assuming it has been adequately addressed.

We want a plan. We want to see a Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for Pleasant Plains ES to properly address its capacity issues. We want more comprehensive boundary studies that include broader scopes, more research, and more explanation. We want a concrete strategy to address overcrowding for all elementary schools in the system, taking into account both current and future projected enrollment.

We know that a Capital Plan takes time and we understand the immediate need. Therefore, we at Hampton want to be a part of the solution. We propose reassigning students from planning blocks 201, 202, 209, 210 and 211, which would bring at least 24 students from Pleasant Plains to Hampton. This solution would satisfy all considerations contained in BCPS’s Rule 1280, which include the primary criteria of efficient use of capacity in the affected schools, and maintaining or increasing the diversity of the region and school system; it would also address secondary goals such as maintaining neighborhood continuity, minimizing impact of transportation and pedestrian patterns, and continuity of feeder patterns. The reassignment of students from any additional planning blocks should NOT be considered as part of Hampton’s role in this process. Boundary Study Committee's recommended option (Option B), does not appear to consider any incoming residential development and would make our school exceed capacity. This means the other students proposed to be moved would need to be absorbed by additional schools. 

 

Jessie Jaeger and Laura Houliaras