Too many school choices in one upstate N.Y. district?

Can a family have “too many school choice options?” One upstate New York school district seems to think so. The Greece Central School District, which fancies itself the largest school system in Monroe County, N.Y., is proposing to eliminate open enrollment and instead split the district into three attendance zones.

Its reason, according to a story today in the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: “With no evidence that offering choice enhances academics and with school costs rising and enrollment waning, the Board of Education wanted to reexamine the status quo.” The status quo, in this case, includes policies that currently allow students at all grade levels to attend schools to which they aren’t zoned on a space-available basis.

A district committee met for months before determining that such open attendance was no longer feasible. So Interim Superintendent John O’Rourke wants to discontinue not only the liberal enrollment policies, but also draw tighter attendance zones around the remaining few “schools of choice.”

“I’m glad we finally had something done to look at this,” one board member said.

While a district fact sheet cautions that these are nothing more than proposals. The board president, Frank Oberg, bestowed his blessing on the plan during his interview with the Democrat and Chronicle:

I think [O’Rourke’s] recommendations are outstanding. He’s come up with a great compromise that addresses a lot of the issues that swirl about Greece — too much busing and too many school choice options. 

Avatar photo

BY Adam Emerson

Editor of redefinED, policy and communications guru for Florida education nonprofit