The Central Okanagan Board of Education is revisiting catchment area regulations for several Kelowna elementary schools.
The planning and facilities committee has recommended the trustees review the catchments for Bankhead and Watson Road elementary schools, along with all Rutland elementary schools with an eye to reinstatement of catchment boundaries for Black Mountain and Ellison schools.
The board will consider the recommendations at Wednesdays’s first board of education meeting for the 2018-19 school term.
The Bankhead-Watson Road review has been spawned by the recent growth of the Highpointe Drive and Clifton Road area subdivisions.
The current catchment boundary lines for the two schools split the expanding subdivision and in some cases individual properties causing confusion for parents where to register their children for elementary school.
In Rutland, there is currently an open boundary policy which was discussed by the board in September 2016, but the trustees held off on establishing proper Rutland catchment areas until a decision on the new Rutland Middle School was finalized.
While that middle school decision remains unanswered, the school district’s long-term facility plan recommends catchment boundaries for Black Mountain and Ellison elementary schools to more clearly define transportation eligibility for students.
The district currently provides a 100 per cent subsidy for school bus riders living outside the four kilometre distance for primary grades and 4.8 km for Grades 4-12 from their catchment school.
Non-eligible riders under these education ministry guidelines would continue to pay a $250/student transportation fee.
Factors under consideration for catchment boundaries include future population growth potential, level of current and potential future school utilization, and issues of geographic concern.
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