Redistricting

 

 

Elementary Redistricting Information

 

Welcome to the District's all-encompassing site for redistricting plan information. Redistricting is the process of changing school attendance boundaries within a school district. You will find links to important information, flyers and presentations regarding the 2017-18 GFPS redistricting process.

Background Information:

Our community graciously passed a $98.8 million bond levy that will pay for the renovations, upgrades, and remodeling of several school sites. It also includes the building of a replacement school for both Longfellow and Roosevelt Elementary School. With the building of the Roosevelt replacement school outside of its current boundaries, it is the optimal time to review and revise current elementary boundaries. This process will be facilitated by Cropper GIS.  Cropper has extensive experience creating study teams for community-based projects. A redistricting study team will be developed to represent the entire community. This process will end with a recommendation plan to the Board of Trustees for their final approval. 

Cropper GIS has identified five phases of a community-driven redistricting process to begin in the fall of 2017 and to be completed by February 2018. These phases will include:

1. Data collection

2. Data analysis/ assimilation

3. Committee application/selection process

4. Baseline attendance boundary proposal development

5. Committee/school board/public meetings

On February 27, 2017, Cropper facilitated a board work session to develop a clear set of parameters that the committee and consultants can abide by when developing redistricting scenarios:

GFPS Redistricting Guiding Principles/Criteria:

 Maximize safety of students by defining boundaries along major geographical features such as roads, rivers, and railroads.  Try to minimize students’ crossing over major roads if possible.

Balance building utilization by reducing overcrowding in schools based on functional capacity.

Maximize transportation efficiency and walkability whenever possible. 

 Contiguous boundaries: Analyze ‘satellite’ boundaries for practicality. 

 Balance demographic diversity. Maximize the socio-economic diversity of schools with any redistricting change whenever possible.

Consider middle and high school placements.

 Attempt to keep identifiable community entities intact (apartment and condominium complexes, trailer parks, subdivisions, MAFB. etc.)

 Minimize the number of student moves, while considering redistricting goals.

Be proactive for future potential growth if all possible.

 

Roles and Responsibilities:

The redistricting process requires involvement from all stakeholders, including study team members, members from the general public, school administrators and the school board.  As noted in the table below, the study team volunteers are not the only stakeholders in the redistricting study. The general public has an important role, as do the project consultants, the Superintendent, School Board and staff of GFPS.

 

Outline of Stakeholder Responsibilities

 Consultant

  • Schedule study team meetings, Run meetings.

  • Conduct community information meetings to solicit feedback to committee proposals.

  • Present information regarding process and committee recommendations at the School Board’s public hearing.

  • Organize, summarize, and present emails to study team.

  • Work with study team during meetings.

  • Assist with written communication with households.

  • Anticipate one to two study team meetings per month.

 Study Team

  • Study team to include approximately 20-25 members.

  • Members represent areas they live in rather than schools.

  • Members confirm time commitment.

  • Study team will review and develop appropriate number of redistricting options to bring to community.

  • Study team will provide invaluable feedback and comments related to the redistricting project as GFPS formulates recommendations to be presented to the School Board.

 General Public

  • Informed through website.
  • Invited to submit comments by email, letter, and other means.
  • Invited to attend study team meetings as observers and community information meetings for feedback.

 

 School Board

 

  • Charge study team with its responsibilities.
  • Directs specific questions to the Superintendent's appointed designee, who will then follow-up with the consultants for information.
  • Invited to attend study team meetings as observers (does not directly participate in committee meetings).



 Superintendent  or Designee

 

  • Attends community information meetings, and the first study team meeting, gives the charge from the Board, and then removes self from the study team’s work.
  • Answers School Board questions or directs to consultant or designee.

 District Staff

  • Attends every study team meeting, provides technical guidance when needed.
  • Maintains web updates – notification of progress of study team.
  • Responsible for mailings to households.



Call for Committee Members

Great Falls Public Schools is inviting the public to apply for committee membership for the upcoming redistricting study. The objective in developing the redistricting committee is to form a group of members who equally represent various areas of the city. The Great Falls Public Schools is seeking 20-25 members. The committee will focus on providing redistricting scenarios for all elementary schools.

  • Click here for application
  • Applications are due July 30, 2017
  • Please mail  or email your completed application to:

Ruth Uecker

Assistant Superintendent K-6

Great Falls Public Schools

1100 4th Street South

Great Falls, MT 59405

(406) 268-6006

  • Applications can also be emailed to ruth_uecker [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us (subject: Redistricting%20email)
  • Applicants who are selected for the committee will be notified by mail and/or email.

Meeting Dates

  • Public Information Session - September 11th, 2017 - 7 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Committee Meeting #1 - September 12th, 2017 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Committee Meeting #2 - October 10th, 2017 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Committee Meeting #3 - November 7th, 2017 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Committee Meeting #4 - November 28th, 2017 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Community Forum - December 12th, 2017 6-7:30 PM - Aspen
  • Committee Meeting #5 - January 9th, 2018 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar
  • Committee Meeting #6 - January 30th, 2018 - 6 - 8 PM - Birch/Cedar