The West Bloomfield School District is mid-way through a series of meetings for parents and residents to give their opinions on the district’s school enrollment and facilities project. Those with school-age children should make a point of attending one of the remaining meetings to listen, learn, and provide input as the district considers how to best serve the current and future student enrollment.
In February, the district’s Board of Education approved a contract with Western Demographics, Inc. to conduct a facility utilization and enrollment trend study for $70,000.
Last week, the parents of elementary school students living in the northern end of the district and PTO members from Gretchko, Roosevelt and Scotch elementary schools met at Scotch. Later in the week, the parents of students living in the district’s south end and PTO members from Ealy and Sheiko elementary schools met.
On April 9 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Orchard Lake Middle School, parents of Orchard Lake Middle School and Doherty Elementary School students are invited to meet.
On April 10 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Abbott Middle School, parents and Abbott PTO members will meet.
All staff members will meet at West Bloomfield High School on April 24 from 7 to 9 p.m.
All parents are welcome to attend any of the sessions designated for elementary or middle school levels. Parents and residents will be shown demographic maps of the district, broken down into enrollment by schools, and enrollment of resident and Schools of Choice students. Attendees will also have the chance to cast anonymous votes on issues regarding school enrollment, consolidation, and district priorities.
So far district officials aren’t commenting on the potential for closing one or more school buildings based on enrollment trends. It’s conceivable no buildings will be closed as a result of the ongoing study. On the other hand, buildings were closed in the last couple years in a pair of other west Oakland districts that embarked on similar endeavors, so we’re encouraging all families in the district to attend at least one of these sessions.
There are few issues as emotional and tumultuous as a school building closing and consolidating the impacted students into one or more different schools. Scheduling of the public meetings on facilities and enrollment is akin to an open invitation to come and hear how the district is evolving and to play a role in deciding how, if at all, changes are made to maximize use of existing facilities in delivering education to current and future students.
This is the public’s opportunity to chime in and participate in some crucial decision-making: Accept the invitation and let your questions, ideas, and concerns be heard.