Austin ISD releases updated school changes plan

AISD has released an updated school changes plan for the 2020-2021 school year.

The previous plan included the closure of 12 schools across the district. This new plan lists some schools at a higher risk to close than others.

"The changes target certain schools and there are certain communities that have to make the sacrifices instead of the whole district. This is a school district not a district of schools,” said Pilar Zazueta, a parent at Ridgetop Elementary, one of the schools being considered to close. 

The district, in the version 2 document, said these changes will help strengthen the academic core at every campus. The cost of change is high from some schools meaning closures and consolidations, something parents like Zazueta are not happy about.

"It's too many changes too fast and nobody understands very well their rationalization," Zazueta said. "We ask the district to slow down to take more parent feedback and to explain better because it's also a communication issue."

This new plan breaks down the changes in different groups, the first one being potential implementation for the 2020-21 school year.
In it includes the consolidation of Sims and Norman Elementary where students will go to the Norman campus. Metz Elementary will consolidate with Sanchez with students going to the Sanchez campus.

Pease Elementary will be repurposed. The document says they are still working with the community on where they will relocate students.
The next section in the version 2 changes includes those schools still under consideration is for the 2020-21 school year. For consolidations, it lists Brooke, Govalle and Linder elementary schools.
Later on in the version 2 document for consolidations, there is a section where more planning and community engagement is needed for the following schools:

  • Reilly and Ridgetop elementary schools,
  • Campbell and Maplewood elementary schools,
  • Dawson, Galindo, Joslin, St. Elmo, and Zilker elementary schools
  • Dobie and Webb middle schools
  • Norman, Sims, Pecan Springs, Pickle, and Winn elementary schools
  • Langford, Palm, Perez, and Widen elementary schools and Paredes Middle School
  • Blanton, Harris, Jordan, Overton, Pecan Springs and Winn elementary schools, Dobie, Martin, Lamar, and Webb middle schools and Sadler Means Young Women's Leadership Academy.

The district's next meeting is tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. at the Millennium Youth entertainment complex in East Austin. They will be discussing the new changes and will be taking input from the public.

The board is also set to vote on these changes on November 18.