NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - The last day of school is just weeks away. Even so, it would well serve families of elementary children in the Nacogdoches ISD to start planning for the next school year.
The action plan decisions on magnet schools and transfer policies may determine which school children attend.
Parents most likely influenced the decision to keep Nettie Marshall a magnet school of dual language. It will be back in the fall, but its future is still under review. A committee is studying the rezoning of all elementary schools.
"So anytime you do rezoning of that nature you're going to be looking at programs at campuses across the district for how they're serving students," said Sandra Dowdy, Nacogdoches ISD's superintendent.
Any student can apply and transfer into dual language, but that option is no longer available at TJR where the fine arts academy is discontinued.
"With the fine arts academy, we did not have that many children that were participating in the program overall," Dowdy said.
Parents wanting to transfer children out of improvement required campuses have few options within the district. They could apply to the academy of dual language, but only one other NISD elementary is eligible to receive transfer requests.
"And that's Raguet Elementary," Dowdy said. "Not everybody can fit into Raguet."
In addition, a once lenient transfer policy will end. Students now in schools outside their zone could very well be assigned back to their neighborhood school in the fall.
"You've got to staff each campus according to numbers for the beginning of school, and whenever you continue to allow them to change, it changes staffing patterns," Dowdy said.
Dowdy added transportation costs go up when children are placed outside their attendance zone. The enforcement may inconvenience some parents. It may lead to transfers to private schools. Administrators said they're ready to accept the consequences, in exchange for an efficient district.
In recent weeks, educators have reviewed each elementary student attending schools outside their attendance zone. Longtime students, close to placing out, were allowed to stay. Yet, younger siblings were assigned to a different school within their attendance zone.