Attendance Areas Committee Update

This is an update about the Attendance Areas PreK-12 Standing Committee and its work. The committee is meeting weekly and has convened three times. The group includes students, parents, community members and staff.

The committee has spent its time studying current and anticipated growth in north Bellingham, current and projected school enrollment, and the capacity of school facilities. They are using the factors in policy 3130 to shape their forthcoming recommendations to the superintendent.

Last week, the group brainstormed numerous ideas to address the two most pressing issues: Cordata Elementary School is full and significant growth is occurring in that area, and Bellingham High is under-enrolled and needs to balance its enrollment by at least 100 students from Squalicum High School. The brainstorming session included looking at the elementary schools (Alderwood, Birchwood, Columbia, Parkview, Roosevelt and Sunnyland) in the area to see where enrollment capacity exists that could help create room at Cordata for current and future needs. The committee also brainstormed ideas for middle and high school attendance area adjustments that would relieve future enrollment pressure at Shuksan Middle School and Squalicum High School for growth.

This week, the committee will review its brainstormed ideas and begin to form some preliminary, draft scenarios. In February, the committee plans to share the draft scenarios with school communities that could possibly be affected to gather feedback from families and staff before forming its recommendation.

Committee meeting minutes are posted online (see committee link above) for those who are interested. Please contact us at 360-676-6512 if you have questions about the process and watch for more information next month.