Heritage parents balk at redistricting

December 09, 1992|By Monica Norton | Monica Norton,Staff Writer

Some parents in the Heritage community took issue last night with a redistricting plan under which their children would be transferred from Germantown Elementary to Parole Elementary in an effort to create a network of neighborhood schools.

One of the objectives of Superintendent C. Berry Carter II's plan is to have children attend the school closest to their homes. Both schools are close to Heritage, with Parole farther away.

"Historically, Heritage has been part of Germantown Elementary since 1965," said Debra Nussbaum, parent of a Germantown student. "If you're talking about community schools, then we've been part of the Germantown community for years."

About 30 residents of Heritage and surrounding communities met last night to discuss a letter they will be sending to Mr. Carter stating their concerns about the plan. They were joined by state Sen. Gerald W. Winegrad, D-Annapolis; County Councilwoman Maureen Lamb, D-Annapolis; and Annapolis Alderman Ruth Gray, R-Ward 4.

The superintendent and his staff have recommended the transfers of about 865 students attending Annapolis, Eastport, Edgewater, Georgetown East, Germantown, Hillsmere, Parole,

Rolling Knolls, Tyler Heights and West Annapolis elementaries to other schools.

The plan would substantially increase the minority population at some schools while decreasing it at others. The new boundaries for the neighborhood schools would be based almost entirely on community borders and less on racial and other considerations.

But Heritage parents said the plan failed to take into account the danger their children will be exposed to while walking a longer distance to Parole along busy, four-lane Forest Drive.

The parents also said they did not believe transferring students from the Heritage community to Parole would alleviate crowding at Germantown. They said that only 12 children from Heritage would be transferred out while a minimum of 50 students from the Admiral Oaks area would be transferred into Germantown.

According to the superintendent's plan, there are currently 476 students at Germantown. If his plan goes into effect, the number of students at the school would increase to 519 in 1993 and 551 in 1994.

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