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Board to consider boundary change for Ruby Bridges, Paden schools

Submitted by on 1, March 29, 2011 – 12:02 amNo Comment

Alameda’s school board is set Tuesday night to consider an attendance boundary change intended to ease overcrowding at Ruby Bridges Elementary School. The move could send an additional 100 to 150 students to underenrolled Paden Elementary over the next five years.

The proposed boundary change was first discussed by district staffers as they generated school closure plans they said would need to be realized if a new school parcel tax wasn’t approved by voters. But staffers said at the time that the boundary change, which won’t affect the schools’ current students, would be considered regardless of the outcome of the tax election.

District officials shuttered three West End elementary schools – Miller, Longfellow and Woodstock – due to low enrollment and to address prior budget shortfalls. But enrollment at Ruby Bridges, which replaced the three schools, skyrocketed beyond expectations: Some 611 students attend the school this year, compared to 366 at Paden.

The current boundary line between the schools is along Pacific Avenue. If approved by the school board for 2011-2012, Paden’s attendance boundary would be moved to Buena Vista Avenue and head north up Poggi Street to Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway, continuing west toward Bay Street. The plan would also give incoming students on the 400, 500 and 600 blocks of Buena Vista Avenue a choice between the two schools.

The changes would affect families on the following blocks:

*1700 block of Fifth Street

*1700 block of Webster Street

*1700-1900 blocks of Third Street

*Second Street

*Cypress Street

*Brush Street

*Maple Street

*Spruce Street

The move could increase walking and driving distances for families by a little less than a half mile, district officials wrote in a presentation to be given on the proposed change, increasing walk time for the furthest address from Paden from seven minutes to 16.

The board’s public session is slated to begin at 6:30 p.m. today. The meeting will be held in the cafeteria at Alameda High School, corner of Oak ad Walnut streets.

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