GUHSD Expands "Transition Area" Families Choice in School

Parents were angered by what they said was a lack of communication

Friday, Feb 17, 2012  |  Updated 5:07 PM PDT
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Parents Peeved at Grossmont Boundary Change

Parents are frustrated with a change to the boundaries for Grossmont high schools.

Parents Peeved at Grossmont Boundary Change

Parents are frustrated with a change to the boundaries for Grossmont high schools.
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After some controversial changes, Grossmont Union High School District officials announced Thursday that they were expanding the right of certain families to choose their child's upcoming school.

According to a media release, officials will allow families who live in regions referred to as "transitional areas" to choose where their incoming 9th grader will attend school.

The report defines a transitional area as a "school attendance area that has changed as a result of the boundary changes approved in November 2011, specifically excluding students whose previous attendance area is currently served by a charter school."

The move would guarantee the choice of future incoming 9th graders between old and new school attendance boundaries, according to the media release.

Furthermore, officials said they will communicate these options to the affected students and families proactively - a sticking point that some parents took issue with during earlier changes.

Earlier on Thursday, the GUHSD superintendent, Ralf Swenson, reached out to parents after admitting his district fell short on communicating to them about the redistricting in the GUHSD, which now has new policies on high school boundaries and open enrollment.

Parents, however, said a shift in district boundaries was made without their input, and would harm their children's future.

Last month, parents grew angry when they found out their children may not be headed to the high school they were expecting.

"I have nothing against Monte Vista," one parent said at the meeting, "but if I am going to send my child that far away, and knowing so few students, you can bet we will choose Steele Canyon, because it has higher API scores and it's the same distance away from the homes in our neighborhood."

Grossmont caters to eight partner districts with 22,000 students.

Superintendent Swenson said last month the district notified the families in the district which covers most of the East County.

He says the boundary change process was also posted on the district's website and in local media.

“There is always someone who wishes you could have communicated more and perhaps there might have been some other things we could have done,” said Swenson. “Our intention was surely to make people aware of what we were doing.”

Here is the map of the district's boundaries.
 

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