Brunswick County Board of Education chooses redistricting plan

Updated: Jan. 14, 2020 at 4:00 PM EST
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BOLIVIA, N.C. (WECT) - During a special called meeting of the Board of Education, members voted unanimously for Option 1, to re-district elementary school and middle school students in the Northern Portion of Brunswick County.

An outside consultant finalized four options for re-redistricting in December. GIS Cropper and a second consulting group, EDULOG, both recommended Option 1.

Cropper GIS, an outside consulting firm, crafted four final options for the Brunswick County...
Cropper GIS, an outside consulting firm, crafted four final options for the Brunswick County Board of Education to consider in Phase 1 of redistricting.(WECT)

EDULOG analyzes transportation for school systems and looked at the current bus operations in Brunswick County and how each of the four choices would affect students’ bus ride times as well as the cost of operation for the county.

The district is in phase one, which aims to ease overcrowding issues at Belville Elementary School and route students to the new Town Creek Middle School opening Fall 2020.

This phase does not affect high schools.

“If we take the overall picture and put all that together then we feel like we have made the very best decision possible for all students,” Board of Education Chairwoman, Ellen Milligan said.

Milligan acknowledged that none of the plans would leave 100 percent of families happy with their outcome.

“I know its disappointing for them and I really hate that we can’t you know, meet the needs of every family, but again the overall goal is to do whats best for all Brunswick county schools and students,” she said.

According to the school district, Option 1 boasts the following highlights:

  • Good balance of ES Utilization, with space left in Bolivia, Lincoln, and Town Creek to account for future enrollment growth.
  • Belville ES is still near max capacity at 97.2% estimated utilization, but it gets substantial capacity relief.
  • Impacts the least number of ES students of all the Options (185), but the second most MS students (331).
  • All elementary schools feed 100% into a middle school.
  • Town Creek MS at 60.2% estimated utilization, which gives room to grow with anticipated future students.
  • Bus travel times shortened on average, with more students having a ride time less than 20 minutes and few students with ride times longer than 21 minutes, according to transportation consultants

You can review the final four draft options here. Option 1 information begins at slide 15.

The board is still discussing the options for students who will begin 5th grade and 8th grade this fall and whether those students who do fall in a new school district will be allowed to stay and finish out their years in either elementary or middle school at their current school.

Milligan expects a decision on that within a month or so.

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