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October 22, 2014

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schools:

1,000 students could be moved to balance attendance

With a Clark County School District panel on a mission to fill seats at Liberty High School, four other area high schools are involved in proposals that could rezone up to 1,000 students.

Three proposals — potentially affecting students at Coronado, Foothill, Green Valley, Liberty and Silverado high schools — were approved at a Tuesday meeting, completing the first step of the three-step process.

After a final review Dec. 16, the proposals will be brought to public hearings beginning 6 p.m. Jan. 12 at Foothill. By the end of February, the Attendance Zone Advisory Commission will choose one proposal to present as a recommendation to the School Board.

The proposals are as follows:

-- The first would move Foothill students living west of Gibson Road and south of the Las Vegas Beltway to Coronado; Coronado students living north of the Beltway and east of Green Valley Parkway would move to Green Valley High School; and Coronado students living in Sun City Anthem and Madeira Canyon would move to Liberty. If students moved to the area around the Henderson Executive Airport, they would also be rezoned for Liberty.

-- The second would move Coronado students living north of the Beltway and west of Green Valley Parkway to Silverado. Silverado students living south of Pebble Road and west of Pollock Drive and students living south of Blue Diamond Road, southeast of Las Vegas Boulevard and Robindale Road and west of Bermuda Road would move to Liberty.

-- The third would move the same Coronado students as the second. Silverado students living southwest of the Beltway and Bermuda Road, southwest of Windmill Lane and Pollock, and north of Pebble would move to Liberty.

Several parents came from Foothill to provide some of the first public comments the commission has received from the school.

They said the high school has been the only constant for them, citing several recent elementary and middle school changes.

"Kesterson, Twitchell/Vanderburg, Burkholder, Miller... this has been the one consistent school she's had," Jill Heintz said of her oldest daughter, a senior. Another child was to start at Foothill as a freshman next year, she said.

"She has really paved the way for our family, and I would really prefer that we stay there," Heintz said.

Parents from several schools said they were interested in phasing, a concept that allows students already attending a school to stay there until graduation, assuming certain criteria are met.

Phasing is currently approved only as a pilot program at the middle school level.

Interested parents have asked to see the criteria for phasing at other levels, and Sharon Dattoli, director of the zoning and demographics department, told them it would be on the commission's Web site — azac.ccsd.net — soon. Copies of the three proposals also will be posted on the Web site after each receives a final review Dec. 16.

"I feel strongly about the board considering phasing no matter which proposal is brought to the table," Julie Harrison, a Coronado parent, said.

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