City/county Digest

CITY/COUNTY DIGEST

Baltimore & Region

December 13, 2005

Harford school redistricting questioned at meeting

More than 100 parents and students packed the Harford County school board meeting last night - many wearing orange Fallston High School colors - to challenge a redistricting proposal that would shift thousands of students in the county'smost populated area.

The preliminary proposal redraws boundary lines most significantly around Bel Air, where the new Patterson Mill middle and high school complex is expected to open for the 2007-2008 school year.

The move would have a domino effect on surrounding districts; Bel Air High School would receive hundreds of students from Fallston.

Some at the meeting challenged the board to release data on how many students would be shifted from school to school and questioned the disruption of elementary to middle school feeder patterns.

"The refusal of the administration to release data leads us to believe they are holding back or hiding some pertinent information," said parent Mike Feinour, 42, of Forest Lakes. Adoption of a final proposal is expected in March or April.

Justin Fenton

Harford County

Bel Air

$2 million pledged for new YMCA

The YMCA of Central Maryland has pledged $2 million toward a new 8-acre facility in Bel Air, officials announced yesterday. The Walter and Betty Ward YMCA, to be built in the Box Hill South Corporate Center near Routes 24 and 924, will include athletic fields and a playground, before- and after-school childcare, teen enrichment programs, youth sports and summer camps. Groundbreaking is expected to take place in April with a grand opening slated for early 2007. An additional $7 million is still needed.

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