Attendance Area Changes

  • The Columbia Public Schools understands that attendance areas will change when new buildings open, and may need to be adjusted when school buildings have grown beyond their capacity. In 2020, Columbia Public Schools will open its seventh middle school.  In order to incorporate the new middle school into the school district and address continued growth in Columbia, secondary (grades 6-12) attendance areas must be adjusted.

  • In September 2018, the Board of Education approved guiding principles to help outline the process.  

    Guiding Principles
    Set by the Board of Education (September 2018)
    * Attendance areas do change and will continue to change. This work is part of a regular review of district enrollment patterns and the addition of a new middle school. 
    * The attendance area should anticipate future growth of neighborhoods. A walkable and bikeable school is important, but may not always be possible.
    * The attendance area seeks to reflect the composition of the Columbia Public School community.
    * The board recognizes the power of a school to create community. Accessibility for families is important (volunteering and attending school functions are easier when the school is near).
    * Consider time students spend on a bus and distance traveled to and from school.
    * Consider attendance areas boundary lines that follow natural/manmade boundaries. 
    * Consider a transfer policy that allows 8th and 12th graders to remain at their previous school and policies that allow siblings to remain.
     
    Timeline
    Sept. 10, 6:30 p.m. – Board of Education Meeting to Consider Attendance Area Process Guiding Principles
    Oct. 1 – High School Student Advisory Feedback Group
    Oct. 8, 6:30 p.m. - Board of Education Meeting Cooperative Strategies Process Review
    Oct. 8 – Realtor and Developers Focus Group
    Nov. 12, 6:30 p.m. - Board of Education Meeting Cooperative Strategies Attendance Area Update
    Nov. 1 - Focus Group Application Process Opens
    Nov. 14 - Focus Group Application Deadline
    Nov. 21 - Focus Group Participant Notification
    Dec. 3-5 – Parent, Employee and Community Focus Groups
    Dec. 20 – Board of Education Work Session, Draft Attendance Area Scenarios Based on Focus Group Feedback Become Available
    Dec. 20 - Community Online Survey Opens
    Jan. 9-11 – Community Open Houses
    Feb. 11 6:30 p.m. – Board of Education Meeting, Discuss Attendance Area Recommendation (possible board action)
    March 11 6:30 p.m. – Board of Education Meeting, Vote on Attendance Area Recommendation (final date for board action)