As the district continues to address Basswood Elementary overcrowding, the Osseo Area School Board met Tuesday, Jan. 21 for a public work session in which the district's open enrollment policy was discussed, specifically related to overcrowding at Basswood.
Superintendent Kate Maguire has a revised proposal in which Census Area 284 would stay at Basswood, and open-enrolled students at Basswood would be moved to Oak View. Fifth and sixth grade open enrollees would be allowed to stay, if they choose.
After research was completed, staff found that 51 students who are open-enrolled to Basswood from Oak View and Cedar Island. In Census Area 284, 109 students in Kindergarten through fourth grade would have been reassigned to Oak View.
"The logic of moving students from a Basswood attendance area to Oak View, and allowing students from Oak View and Cedar Island to remain at Basswood just no longer held," said Barbara Olson, the director of school and community relations for Osseo Area Schools.
Olson continued: "We have had a very liberal open enrollment policy for 10 years– we encourage choice. Our policy has been in place for 10 years and our procedures have worked well for 10 years. But this situation is a little unique because of the number of families that already are open-enrolled to Basswood from the school we are proposing to move Basswood families to."
Olson said the district will not need to make an open-enrollment policy change, but will make some changes to procedure.
"(This situation) is causing us to look at our procedures – which are administrative procedures, not board policy," Olson said. She added that they've already identified some areas where they can be more clear with open-enrolled families, such as on open enrollment application forms, on the status of schools within the district.
There are two information sessions for Basswood open-enrolled parents (the proposal affects those open-enrolled to Basswood only) to learn more about the discussion at the work session:
- Friday, Jan. 24 from 8-9 a.m., Basswood Media Center
- Monday, Jan. 27 from 5:30-6:30 pm, Basswood Cafeteria
The board will take action on the proposal at a regular board meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 28, beginning at 6 p.m.
"The revised recommendation is still a very challenging prospect because it involves disrupting families from a school they love," Olson said.
Other than fifth and sixth graders who would have the choice to stay at Basswood, all open-enrollees would be assigned to Oak View. Families could decide to send their students to Oak View, return to their regular attendance-area school or apply to open enroll at another school in the district.
The board also plans to return Cedar Island, Fair Oaks and Oak View to a grade configuration that matches other elementary schools in the district.
Does this revised proposal make sense to you? Why or why not? Tell us below in the comments.
- Osseo School Proposal Reduces Crowded Basswood Elementary, Angers Parents
- What You Need To Know About The Basswood Elementary Boundary Proposal
- Parents of the Open-Enrolled: Another Voice in the Basswood Boundary Battle
- What People Are Saying: Basswood Boundary Changes
- LETTER: To Those Affected By Basswood Boundary Change
- School Board Schedule
- Osseo Area Schools Ask For Input On All-Day Kindergarten Space Proposals