Northeastern School District considers shuffling some elementary students

Elementary school redistricting proposal from Northeastern School District

MANCHESTER, YORK COUNTY, Pa. --- For some kindergarten through third grade students within the Northeastern School District, they could soon be in a new school.

The district is considering a redistricting proposal to shuffle that age range of students among four schools: Conewago Elementary, York Haven Elementary, Orendorf Elementary, and Mount Wolf Elementary.

On Monday, Superintendent Dr. Stacey Sidle addressed the school board, following up from an April 23 meeting specifically for the proposal.

She said two areas of the district are growing: Conewago and York Haven.

The proposal states a declining birth rate and neighborhood changes as a result of the 2008 recession have affected class sizes, enrollment and building use in the other schools.

The goal for the redistricting, she said, is to make more equitable use out of all four elementary schools.

District officials say the proposal factors in transportation, travel time and keeping families and neighborhoods together.

The proposal recommends the following: moving students in Sherman Oaks from Orendorf to Mount WolF Elementary, reassigning some rural students from York Haven to Orendorf, and placing students in southwestern Conewago Township to Orendorf from Conewago.

Two people commented on the plan at the school board meeting Monday, both in opposition,.

One of which is Dave Zambito, who said his daughter will be moved from Conewago to Orendorf.

He says the district has lacked transparency when it comes to the decisions surrounding the proposal.

He also believes the proposal treats individual students being moved unfairly, citing Title One funding status for Orendorf as part of the proposal.

Title One funding is federal funding distributed to schools and school districts based on the percentage of low-income families.

“This is not the kind of decision that should be made ripping off a band-aid at the eleventh hour and the board being pressured into a decision that is going to affect the lives, potentially for the rest of their lives, of these children,” said Zambito.

Northeastern School District officials say a vote on the redistricting proposal will come at the next school board meeting in two weeks, Monday, March 20.

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