Families living on roughly ten blocks of Park Slope turf will lose their coveted seats at two top-notch neighborhood schools under a plan that draws controversial new school zone boundary lines.
The Department of Education’s remapping proposal, released on Wednesday night, shrinks the areas that feed into the beloved elementaries PS 321 and PS 107 — so popular many parents move to the neighborhood for guaranteed seats.
The remapping cuts yet-to-be-enrolled PS 321 students living on:
• The blocks bounded by Fourth and Fifth avenues between First and Fifth streets.
• The blocks bounded by Third and Fourth avenues between First and Sixth streets.
• The blocks bounded by Seventh Avenue and Prospect Park West between Fourth and Fifth streets.
Areas nixed from PS 107 include:
• The blocks bounded by Sixth and Seventh avenues between 11th and 14th streets.
• The blocks bounded by Eighth Avenue and Prospect Park West between Windsor Place and Prospect Park Southwest.
The new zones will not affect students who already attend the schools, and they will not be implemented before fall 2013, the Department of Education says.
Yet-to-be-enrolled students cut from the PS 321 zone will attend a new elementary school slated to open on Eighth Street and Fourth Avenue and students nixed from the PS 107 zone will attend PS 10 in Windsor Terrace, under the plan.
Department of Education planner Carrie Marlin said the new boundary lines are designed to shrink class sizes and eliminate kindergarten waiting lists at the crowded schools.
“We see now there’s not going to be the ability to serve the whole zone,” Marlin said.
At meeting on Tuesday, more than 100 nervous moms and dads — along peeved property owners who fear the change will hurt property values — said the new zones divide the neighborhood literally and figuratively.
“We are devastated — it’s disassembling our whole community,” said Lisa Scrivens, a mom with a preschooler.
The rezoning, which was introduced by District 15’s Community Education Council, comes after parents at the schools complained classes were too full and kindergarten waiting lists were too long.
To alleviate crowding, PS 321 principal Liz Phillips even removed an art room to accommodate more students.
That’s part of the reason why principals at both schools now support the proposal, which the city will float for 43 days before a final vote.
“It’s a very hard decision. It’s not ideal. But it could be a permanent solution,” Phillips said.Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at noneill@cn
©2012 Community News Group
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