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Plan C: What's different in third GBAPS boundary proposal

Posted at 4:42 AM, May 01, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-01 05:42:22-04

GREEN BAY (NBC26) — Working with a consulting firm, the Green Bay Area Public Schools (GBAPS) Boundary Adjustment Advisory Committee considered a third plan Tuesday night to re-draw the district's boundary maps.

  • The first two plans focused on creating K-8 schools to consolidate schools as much as possible
    • The plans did not receive widespread public support, with more than half of survey respondents saying they were "unsupportive" or "very unsupportive" — so the consulting firm (Woolpert) went back to the drawing board and presented the committee with the revised plan
  • The new plan, Scenario C, proposes several changes to the original two:
    • creating a new elementary school on the West side
    • closing Elmore Elementary and consolidating it into Chappell and Lincoln Elementary
    • consolidating Langlade Elementary into Doty
    • adjusting or reassigning three other boundaries
  • The committee initially did not agree on the size of the potential new west side school, but then put its support behind a proposed 600-student school that would involve the merging of Kennedy, Keller, and MacArthur Elementary schools
  • The committe also supported moving Langlade into Doty, rather than an alternate option that would move consolidate Doty into Langlade
  • The new boundaries would not be effective until 2025 at the earliest — but GBAPS already plans to close three schools before the 2024-25 school year
  • The public can give input on the new boundary proposal at either of two public informational meetings Tuesday, May 7 at the Neville Museum
  • Video shows the new maps

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

A consulting firm hired by Green Bay Area Public Schools created two options for new school boundaries. Last month, a public survey didn't support either one.Tuesday night, Option C was presented for the first time.

Green Bay Area Public Schools is facing declining enrollment, aging buildings, and a budget deficit.

"There are many school districts in the state of Wisconsin right now that are facing the same thing that we are," interim superintendent Vicki Bayer said.

So it needs to consolidate and re-draw its maps. The first two options did not receive widespread community support — so Bayer says the firm developed a third plan — with a few changes.

"What we've come back with is a narrower focus, which is what the community asked us to do," Bayer said. "And there didn't seem to be a large support for K-8s. So this time around, we left those off."

The boundary adjustment advisory committee — a group of 15 people, with nine present Tuesday — considered the plan, and supported these new elements:

A potential new 600-student elementary school on the west side, that would consolidate MacArthur Elementary into Kennedy.

An idea to expand Doty elementary so it could absorb Langlade Elementary

The committee members know they need to present a plan that is palatable to the entire district — because they'll need referendum money to make some of the changes, like building a new school.

"We waited 40 years to do this work," committee member David Harswick said. "We cannot wait much longer."

"Without a referendum passage, we still have a budget deficit, so we would need to make adjustments regardless," Bayer said. "They just might look different than what the committee has been working on, because we'll be forced to make some changes."

The full plan is available online — we linked to it here.

Next week on Tuesday, people can take a look at this new plan and give their input — at the Neville Museum, May 7, at either of two information meetings — at 12:15 p.m. or 6 p.m.