The Loudoun School Board has adopted new attendance assignments for eight elementary schools in the southern end of the county.
In a unanimous vote late Tuesday, the board agreed on Plan 104, which reassigns about 2,100 students. The attendance changes, that will go into effect in August, are needed to make room for the new Waxpool Elementary School in Ashburn and to decrease enrollment at some of the county’s most crowded elementary schools.
The adopted plan will reassign more students than most of the other seven proposals drafted by school system planners and School Board members. But board members said the plan would cut down on attendance changes in the future in the area north and east of Dulles Airport by taking into account two future elementary schools that will open in the area: ES-34, slated to open in 2028 and ES-23, with a planned opening in 2021.
School Board member Beth Huck (At Large) pointed out that the adopted plan, 104, was based off of her proposal, Plan 102, which was based off of Eric Hornberger’s (Ashburn) proposal, Plan 101. “So we definitely have worked through a few of the little hiccups and issues and together have come up with a plan we can all support,” she said.
Chairman Jeff Morse (Dulles) agreed. “This is probably the most collaborative attendance boundary process that we’ve ever had in the seven years since I’ve been on the board,” he said, noting that Plan 104 was his proposal but it was based on input from other board members and members of the community.
Board members agreed on one amendment to the plan, which is to return in January for an expedited boundary change for three planning zones: DN 45, DN 45.2 and DN 45.3. The adopted plan reassigns them from Moorefield Station Elementary—which is currently hundreds of students above its building capacity—to Mill Run Elementary. The expedited boundary changes are aimed at reassigning students in those neighborhoods from the Stone Hill Middle School and Rock Ridge High School cluster to the Eagle Ridge Middle School/Briar Woods High School cluster, so they are not splintered from the rest of their community in their secondary school years.
“Their primary concern was not being cluster aligned,” Hornberger said. “We want those families to know we intend to address that issue.”
Superintendent Eric Williams said his team can have a staff recommendation ready for the board’s next meeting, on Jan. 8, in time for the board to adopt a final boundary map Jan. 22.