Something has to be done about Reading Elementary - now.
The school is simply bursting at the seams with students, says a Davis School District official.At a public meeting to be held at the school tonight at 7:30 p.m., the committee will present a plan to redraw the boundaries of Reading Elementary, 2025 N. 150 West, and Stewart Elementary, 1125 N. Main.
Calling it an "emergency situation," Assistant Superintendent Stephen Ronnenkamp said the north Centerville area has been experiencing a high rate of move-ins to new residential subdivisions.
For the past two years, the student population growth within the boundaries of Reading Elementary has been about 8 percent, said Ronnenkamp.
The school district had only planned on a 3 percent growth rate.
"It's caught us off guard," Ronnenkamp said.
Reading Principal Maynard White-sides said his school's enrollment is currently 760 students. The school's capacity - extended with three portable classrooms - is supposed to be set at 665 students.
"One of our 5th grade classes has 38 students. The 4th, 5th and 6th grades are all averaging in the 30s. That's just too many."
For the school's 24 teachers, "it hasn't been a very good situation this year," Whitesides said.
Explaining that elementary school enrollments are hard to predict anyway because of an unknown number of incoming kindergarten-age children, Ronnenkamp said the Reading problem has been exacerbated by the high residential growth rate.
Projected enrollments made in February show that Reading would have 828 students this fall.
That prompted the district to form a special committee in early March to come up with a way to deal with the overcrowding.
Whitesides said that under the boundary shift plan, which would go into effect this fall, children living west of Main Street and between Rick's Creek and 1500 North would be shifted from Reading to Stewart, whose projected enrollment of 714 is below its capacity of 742. (Rick's Creek runs diagonally from about 1550 N. Main to about 1700 N. 800 West.)
The boundary change - which would shift about 70 students from Reading to Stewart - is only the first step to solving the problem. Ronnenkamp predicted Reading will probably have to go on a year-round schedule by the 1992-93 school year. And the schools will have to purchase additional portable classrooms, Whitesides said.
Russ Olson, a district area administrator, also foresees possible boundary changes soon affecting Centerville, J.A. Taylor and West Bountiful elementary schools. That's why parents from within those schools' boundaries were part of the committee, he said.