School Board makes relief school rezoning recommendations

The suggested rezoning options will go to a public hearing and vote on Oct. 13.

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  • | 1:30 p.m. September 16, 2020
  • West Orange Times & Observer
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Orange County Public Schools officials are another step closer to determining rezoning options for upcoming relief schools.

During a Sept. 15 Rule Development Workshop, School Board members reviewed these options for relief schools scheduled to open next fall. Nothing has been officially decided yet, although the board members made their recommendations.

In West Orange County, that includes Site 80-H-SW-4 (relief for Dr. Phillips and Freedom high schools),  Site 113-H-W-4 (relief for West Orange and Windermere high schools), and Site 65-M-W-4 (relief of Bridgewater Middle School). 

The district previously held a community meeting in March to introduce the rezoning options to parents and stakeholders. The two rezoning options presented for Site 80-H-SW-4 differed slightly by boundaries.

For Site 113-H-W-4, the district originally presented four rezoning options, two of which involve some changes to West Orange High’s zoning. OCPS had also proposed a rezoning involving Bridgewater Middle and Site 65-M-W-4 that would have some of the middle school students temporarily housed in a separate wing of the relief high school.

At the Sept. 15 workshop, the School Board determined that the following options will be advertised for a public hearing and vote: Site 80-H-SW-4 Option 1, Site 113-H-W-4 Option 2, and Site 65-M-W-4 Option 1.

For Site 80-H-SW-4, Option 1 would have projected student enrollment numbers upon opening in fall 2021 at 1,792 for the relief school, 3,529 for Dr. Phillips and 2,966 for Freedom. Dr. Phillips High’s enrollment numbers include magnet students. Relief high schools open with no senior class. Of the community response OCPS received regarding the two options, parents overwhelmingly supported Option 1.

For the other relief school and relief middle school, Site 113-H-W-4 Option 2 and Site 65-M-W-4 Option 1 would share a building through the 2022-23 school year. That means some of the middle school students would be temporarily housed in a separate wing of the relief high school until Site 65-M-W-4 is built. Additionally, Site 113-H-W-4 Option 2 would include some changes to the rezoning for West Orange High.

According to OCPS, community response regarding Site 113-H-W-4 Option 2 was roughly 63% opposed and 37% in support. For Site 65-M-W-4 Option 1, that response was roughly 57% opposed and 43% in support.

All proposed changes now will move to a formal public meeting for discussion and vote on Oct. 13. To view the presentation, click here.


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