Bay District Discusses Rezoning - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Bay District Discusses Rezoning

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In response to a changing student population, the Bay District School Board begins the discussions of rezoning. Superintendent Bill Husfelt introduced the topic at Tuesday's School Board Meeting.

There are two things that factor in to the need to rezone: a major growth issue on the beach, and the fact that charter schools continue to grow and attract students from non-charter schools.

The last rezoning at all levels was approved in 1999 to be implemented in 2000-2001. However, in 2009 there was rezoning in spots to prepare for the opening of Deerpoint Elementary in 2010.

Right now, Husfelt says there is a need for another rezoning due to a major growth problem on the beach, leading some schools to reach or exceed capacity. On the other hand, some schools in town have extremely low capacity. For instance, Deerpoint Elementary is only at 50 percent capacity. With two new charter schools opening this year, one charter school has expanded 15 percent and another just added a grade, these schools are taking students from the non-charter schools.

"You can combine schools. You can repurpose schools. You can close schools," says Husfelt. "I mean, everything is on the table like it was before. We have to look and see what we can do to be as efficient as possible and still take care of our children at the same time."

The rezoning would take place no sooner than next year