More than 75 Viewmont High School students picketed in front of the high school Friday afternoon to protest a Davis School District proposal to bus West Bountiful youths to Bountiful High School next year.
West Bountiful students have been attending Viewmont since the school was built.The youths carried signs saying "We want to stay," " A penny saved is a penny earned: Don't waste VHS," and other slogans and chanted "We're the future, let us stay."
Students said the protest was their idea and had been planned for several days, ever since it was announced that the district was considering a plan to bus all high-school age youths from West Bountiful to Bountiful High School beginning with the 1991-1992 school year next fall.
The plan is designed to help cure the overcrowding at Davis High School in Kaysville and includes a proposal to bus Farmington students, who have traditionally gone to Davis High, to Viewmont.
Under the plan, about 450 Davis High students would be shifted to Viewmont; about 570 Viewmont youths would be shifted to Bountiful High; and about 150 Bountiful High students would be moved to Woods Cross High.
School district officials say they plan to vote on the proposal at their next regular school board meeting in about 10 days.
Janet Duncan, West Bountiful, who said she was in the third graduating class at Viewmont, told the Deseret News that practically every parent she knows in West Bountiful who has ties to Viewmont is against busing their children to Bountiful High School.
West Bountiful is within walking distance of Viewmont, she said. "It makes more sense to bus Farmington youths to Bountiful High School and let West Bountiful students continue to walk to Viewmont. It's silly to bus students from two cities to two schools," she said.
"We first heard about the plan to change the Farmington and West Bountiful school boundaries in May, and we've been angry ever since.
"We held a public meeting with the person who has been doing the planning, Dr. John Reed Call, months ago, and he said it made more sense to bus Farmington youths to Bountiful High and leave West Bountiful students at Viewmont, and we were relieved.
"Then he changed his mind and made the present proposal to the Davis district. West Bountiful parents feel Viewmont is their high school. We went here, and we want our children to go here," Duncan said.
"There are many West Bountiful students going to Viewmont now who will have to change schools next year if the present plan is adopted. What a mess," she said.
Ben Montgomery, 15, West Bountiful, a Viewmont sophomore and one of those demonstrating at the high school Friday afternoon, saidhe wants his younger brother and sister to go to Viewmont. "Why should we be bused four or five miles out of the way when we can walk to school?"
Another demonstrator, Susan Leavitt, 16, Bountiful, said she was picketing in sympathy for the West Bountiful youths who, she said, would be uprooted. "I have a lot of West Bountiful friends, and I don't want to see them have to go to Bountiful High."
Several young picketers from West Bountiful said they and their families have been loyal Viewmont Vikings for years, and they don't want to go to Bountiful High.