Prince George’s schools CEO recommends delaying closure of two schools


Prince George’s County Schools CEO Monica E. Goldson on Wednesday recommended delaying the consolidation of two elementary schools after parents pushed back against an earlier cap proposal that would have closed four campuses by the next school year.

Goldson’s recommendation came as the system reaches its final steps in revising school boundaries in an effort to balance enrollment in different parts of the county. Some schools — particularly in the northern part of the county — have struggled with overcrowding, and more students are expected to enroll in the school system in the coming years.

“While there is no perfect scenario, our hope is to present a plan that positions Prince George’s County Public Schools to address enrollment changes over the long term,” Goldson said in a news release.

Prince George’s school leaders consider boundary changes

Under Goldson’s recommendation, Concord Elementary School in District Heights and Pointer Ridge Elementary School in Bowie would be consolidated in the fall of 2024. An earlier version proposed closing the two schools before the 2023-2024 school year.

Goldson further recommended that boundary changes at 29 schools not go into effect, as the changes would have affected fewer than 20 students at each school, she noted. Those changes would include moving students from Whitehall Elementary to Rockledge Elementary in Bowie and from Among others, Bond Mill Elementary at Scotchtown Hills Elementary in Laurel.

She also suggested that rising fifth- or eighth-graders who would have been affected by the boundary changes stay at their current school for their senior year. Siblings of those students can also stay for that year, according to Goldson’s recommendation, though parents are responsible for transportation.

Bowie parents, where schools were slated to be closed, have spoken out against an earlier proposal made by the district’s advisory and consulting committee. During a rally outside the school system’s offices in October, they noted that enrollments would probably increase in their area in the coming years due to large housing developments. They argued that the school space would be needed to help prevent overcrowding. The parent group has planned another rally on Thursday.

Darius Hyman, the president of the Pointer Ridge parent-teacher association, has helped coordinate the gatherings. He said Goldson’s recommendation to delay consolidation was a step in the right direction, but there is still concern that the community will face a possible school closure. again in another year.

“At this point, it’s an opportunity for them to review the numbers that were very concerning in terms of the growth of the community, what the reports look like and give families the opportunity to start moving to get the new influx of students that will to come into the school zone,” Hyman, 41, said.

The Prince George’s County Board of Education will vote on the school boundary proposal on Nov. 10.

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