Leader Blues

Monday, April 30, 2007

TOP STORY >>District aims to complete zones soon

Leader staff writer

The Cabot School District hopes to have the new rezoning map for elementary attendance zones completed by the May school board meeting. When the boundaries for each of the eight elementary schools are set, students outside the new zones will not be grandfathered in to their old schools, Dr. Frank Holman, district superintendent, told parents Thursday night during the last public meeting on the matter.

“Once a zone is set, if you are in that zone, that is the school they will go to,” Holman said, adding, “this is the best plan we know of right now.”

He said they have four or five schools set aside for students with severe problems, medical conditions or hardships that would hinder them moving schools after the plan is set. The rezoning plan showed to parents is not finalized yet and because of that, some lines might still get moved a quarter- mile one way or a half-mile another way before it is completed.
There are three areas that might move from their proposed zones before it is said and done – the Butlerville community and the Autumnwood and Pinewood subdivisions.

Butlerville’s 69 elementary students have been attending Ward Central Elementary, but in the draft plan, they will go to the new $6.6 million Stagecoach Elementary, which is 1.7 miles further to travel. Autumnwood and Pinewood students, currently at Central Elementary, are to change to Eastside Elementary, but they might end up going to Stagecoach if Butlerville continues at Ward Central.

“The Butlerville community area we would love to see stay at Ward Central, it just depends how full we want to start Stagecoach,” Jim Dalton, assistant superintendent, said. He added that, ideally, they would also like to put Autumnwood and Pinewood at Stagecoach if they can work it out.

Dalton explained attendance boundary changes school by school, highlighting the areas of biggest change.
School zones

Westside Elementary’s boundary, in the draft plan, begins at Hwy. 89 at the high school campus and heads east to Hwy. 67/167, going out to Hwy. 5, just short of West Oaks and the trailer park. Westside Elementary’s zone will not include Bill Foster Memorial Highway or the subdivision behind Kroger.

Central Elementary’s zone includes up to Hwy. 321 to the south, Hwy. 89 to the east, and the railroad tracks to the west; it also includes the area around the post office.

Eastside Elementary’s zone is proposed smaller and longer; Hwy. 89 will be the dividing line between it and Central Elementary. The line between Eastside and Ward Central has not changed in the draft plan. Eastside will take in the Linderman Trail area, Jones Road, Allison Road, Jack Fossett, Ray Sowell Road, Linda Lane, Woodbridge Drive and the Shiloh community.

Stagecoach Elementary, the district’s newest elementary and the reason for the rezoning, will include Crooked Creek, Willow Drive, Crooked Creek Circle, Crooked Creek Drive, Willow Cove, Blooming Ridge, half of Diederich Lane, New Country Road, Winwood Heights, Lemay Road, Bethlehem Road, and stops at the Cabot district boundary, butting up against the Carlisle, Des Arc and Lonoke school districts.

Southside Elementary will include Feland Lane, Kerr Station south of Hwy. 321, Pickthorne, Candlewood, part of Mt. Tabor Road, the other half of Diederich Lane, and stops at the Pulaski County line.

Northside Elementary will include Deer Creek, Willow Lake Cove, Meir Road, Seven Point Lane, Douglas Road, Spotted Fawn Lane, and Willie Ray Drive. The intersection of Thompson Drive and Mt. Springs Road is its boundary point with Magness Creek Elementary, and the boundary with Ward Central is just outside of the Cabot city limits near the industrial park.
Magness Creek Elementary is set to include Paula Lane, W. Oak Drive, Griffin Road and High Point Drive; its boundary with Ward Central will be at the intersection of Lewisburg and Waters Road.

Ward Central Elementary has grown to include all of the Austin area, Williams Road, Waters Road, Revely Road and Sandy Lane; it ends at Hwy. 267 out to the east.