Latest School District Rezoning Proposals Impact Westover Hills Elementary and Blackwell Elementary

Latest School District Rezoning Proposals Impact Westover Hills Elementary and Blackwell Elementary

Parents of RPS student will definitely want to check out the proposed changes impacting your child’s education.

The Richmond Public Schools are going through a significant rezoning process for the 2020-2021 school year. These changes will impact all levels of education, elementary, middle, and high school. There are three stated goals for this rezoning process, Engage the community, Develop new zones for RPS schools that improve the student experience, Develop a plan for the disposition of vacant and non-instructional (owned/rented) properties, and Update the RPS Facilities Plan based on Goals 1, 2, and 3.

A closer look at the Student Experience goal.

Develop new zones for RPS schools that improve the student experience by:

  • Ensuring safe, equitable, and more timely transportation; and leveraging natural boundaries when possible
  • Increasing student diversity of all kinds within schools
  • Alleviating overcrowding and minimizing, if not eliminating, the use of trailers
  • Planning for future student population trends and future development
  • Expediting student placement in modern facilities after rezoning through a variety of measures including new school construction, as well as potential consolidations and closures (revised)

In the most recent proposal Options, 3 and 4 would move some students from Westover Hills Elementary to Blackwell Elementary.

The latest presentation slide show is here.

The map for Option 3 is on page 14 and option 4 is on page 16 of the above pdf. Below are partial screenshots.

Proposed Option 4
Proposed Option 3

John Murden pointed us to slide 41 of the presentation which breaks down the options and the impact each would have on the various school. Capacity at WHES is 451, with 426 actually enrolled. The changes Options 3 & 4 would drop the enrollment to 366 / 379.

The process is still in the early stages. There are 16 more meetings planned (some concurrently) over the month of August. There are three meetings scheduled for August 13th. The closest is at Georgy Wythe High School at 7 PM.
You can find the full schedule of meetings, an input form, an interactive map, and more at the RPS Rezoning page.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game and/or beer.