Huron Valley School administration rolled out a transition plan at the Board of Education meeting on Thursday, March 31 for those students and families impacted by the imminent closure of Highland Middle School.
Transition teams will be comprised of parents, staff and students.
The goal is to balance enrollment with 743 students at Muir Middle School, 777 at Oak Valley Middle School, and 775 at White Lake Middle School.
Academic and social interventions are being designed to meet the needs of individual students who may be struggling. Staffing, transportation, extracurricular activities and athletics will also be addressed.
Student welcoming activities, along with other administrative procedures, will be effectuated in phases for middle school students between now and June 2012.
“Right now students, staff and parents are working on plans for a celebration event for Highland to honor its history for the end of the school year, plus events for the summer to welcome students to their new schools,” said Director of Community Relations Janet Roberts.
Class size at the middle school and elementary level will be determined by a district-wide staffing formula to maintain the current student-to-teacher ratio.
The district will continue its open enrollment procedures for the 2011-12 school year at all three buildings. Approval will be based on availability. Priority will be given to those enrolled previously and/or students who have a sibling already attending that building. Elementary and high school students currently open-enrolled do not need to reapply; however, due to the number of changes involved in closing a school and redistricting, middle school students will need to reapply for open enrollment.
Elementary applications are due by Monday, April 18. Families will be notified by May 6. High school applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis. A lottery system may be warranted if the number of applications exceed the available openings.
Parents that choose open enrollment are responsible for transporting their students to and from school.
Next year, Muir will have a different start time for bus transportation. Other middle schools’ transportation start times may change once transportation scheduling is finalized. Middle school students will either ride separately or together with elementary students, but high school students will not ride with younger grades. Average bus ride lengths will remain about the same.
To maximize savings, Highland Middle School will not be repurposed or used for other district programs in the short term.
“Our goal is to provide a successful transition that meets our students’ academic and social needs. We will continue to work with our parents, students and staff throughout the transition process, both this year and into next, to maintain a positive and enriching educational experience,” said Superintendent Jackie Johnston.