Proposal to move school boundaries upsets some N. TX parents

Some parents in Grapevine-Colleyville ISD are in an uproar over a proposal to move school boundaries, and after a little research, they say they have proof the plan is about extracurricular activities -- not the students.

This has been a hotly-contested issue, and the first time the school board has talked about changing the school boundaries.

Currently, there are four middle schools, one that feeds only to Colleyville Heritage High School and one that feeds only to Grapevine High School.

The other two middle schools split their students between the two high schools.

Many parents feel like the system works and doesn't need to change, and think administrators are shaking things up in the name of sports.

Last fall, the district floated an idea to change the zoning so that all four middle schools would feed equally into the two high schools. A group of parents then started a Facebook page, which now has 865 members.

A task force made up of parents, district employees and coaches reviewed 19 different zoning plans and did not come up with a best solution.

Parents and trustees agree that splitting students from their friends is a painful process, so mom Melissa Pavlicin thinks keeping the kids together is beneficial both academically and socially.

"To make a more successful transition into high school...this transition can be daunting just in itself, but moving up with a known group of students can help alleviate a sense of confusion, loneliness and frustration," said Pavlicin.

Grapevine-Colleyville ISD says the motive behind the change is not because of overcrowding – instead, from parent requests over the years.

But opponents think it has to do with extracurricular activities.

"A lot of parents feel that the reasons we've been given, face-to-face and on paper and social media, that those reasons aren't really what's driving this, and that I think is the crux of why there's so much outcry about it," said mom Melissa Critz.

Critz and others think administrators have not been transparent about their real reason: athletics, so the best athletes can stay and play together.

Parents put in Freedom of Information Act requests, so the district had to turn over thousands of pages in emails and correspondence.

In one email from November, Grapevine High School's head soccer coach wrote, "If we get Grapevine Middle School and Cross Timbers Middle Schools we are getting almost all of the lower socio-economic kids. For my sport this means they will get almost all of the higher level club soccer players."

"To me, that was the most disappointing thing I saw," said Critz.

Changing school boundaries is always an emotional issue, and one that trustees deny they are trying to push through.

Despite all the back-and-forth and months of meetings, there is no proposal on the table, so all middle schools will stay the same through the 2015-2016 school year.


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