May 27, 2021
For Immediate Release
UPPER MARLBORO, MD — Today, Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) published an interim report for the system’s Comprehensive School Boundary Initiative. The report presents the findings from the first phase of data analysis and community engagement, including three draft plans and maps depicting potential future boundaries.
The approaches are based on the school system’s priorities, community feedback and original analysis conducted by a consultant team. The report explores school capacity and utilization; distance traveled to school; and facility condition in addition to recent boundary changes and the possible impact on specialty programs and services.
“We do not take lightly the potential impact of a change in school boundaries on our students and families,” said Dr. Monica Goldson, Chief Executive Officer, “but many schools are over capacity, while others are under capacity or need revitalization. Given the expected increase in utilization and growth challenges, adjusting school boundaries now will help to provide all students with the educational experiences they deserve.”
Guided by a distinct set of priorities, the report offers three different approaches for community review and feedback:
The report release marks the beginning of an important second phase of community engagement. Public input will play a key role in the final selection and implementation. The community is encouraged to: 1) read the full report and/or summary report; 2) use the interactive tool to see how each plan will impact neighborhood schools and their families; and 3) complete the Feedback Survey to share opinions about each approach and the most important factors to students, parents, families and educators.
Parents and grandparents comprised nearly 75 percent of the participants during the first phase of community engagement, held in January. Students provided approximately 20 percent of the remaining community input. Virtual community meetings provided information about the process and analysis while allowing students, families, educators and others to share their priorities and needs. Consistent themes included concerns about over-utilization and overcrowding in classrooms and schools, especially in light of health and safety concerns the COVID-19 pandemic; aging school facilities and the impact on student morale and health; and access to specialty programs.
Following public input throughout the spring and summer, a second round of community engagement activities will take place in the fall. The Boundary Initiative will conclude by February 2022 with recommended boundary changes offered by the CEO to the Prince George’s County Board of Education for their approval. Potential boundary changes will be phased in starting with the 2022-23 school year.
For more information, visit the Boundary Initiative website at www.pgcps.org/boundary.