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Here's how Forsyth County's newest elementary school could impact 5 others
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Renderings of the entrance to Poole's Mill Elementary School, which is set to open for the 2020-21 school year. (Photo courtesy Forsyth County Schools)

The Forsyth County school system released a proposed redistricting map, which if approved would reshape school attendance lines in north Forsyth in anticipation of Poole’s Mill Elementary School opening next year.

At Tuesday’s Board of Education work session, Deputy Superintendent of Schools Joey Pirkle presented the redistricting draft map, walking them through the six proposed redistricting “moves” that will reportedly populate Poole’s Mill and help relieve overcrowding at surrounding elementary schools.

The proposed redistricting would include the following “moves”:

Move 1 - 483 students from Matt Elementary School to Poole’s Mill

Move 2 - 277 students from Sawnee Elementary School to Poole’s Mill

Move 3 – 61 students from Kelly Mill Elementary to Sawnee

Move 4 – 61 students from Matt to Sawnee

Move 5, part 1 – 150 students from Coal Mountain Elementary to Matt

Move 5, part 2 – This area will go to Matt, but the area does not have any students currently

Move 6 – 55 students from Silver City Elementary to Matt

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Forsyth County Schools released a draft of its proposed redistricting map in anticipation of Poole's Mill Elementary School opening at a Forsyth County Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019. (Photo courtesy Forsyth County Schools)

According to Pirkle, these moves would populate Poole’s Mill at 66% of its capacity with 760 students and bring the other affected schools down to below 100% capacity – Sawnee would be at 97% capacity; Matt would be at 97% capacity; Silver City would be at 97% capacity; Coal Mountain would be at 91% capacity; and Kelly Mill would be at 98% capacity.

Forsyth County Schools Superintendent Jeff Bearden commended system staff for their work on the redistricting plan, stating that it achieved the two primary goals that they set out to accomplish.

“As Mr. Pirkle pointed out, the population for Poole's Mill is such we feel very confident that the students who would attend Poole’s Mill would have a very similar experience as our other elementary schools,” Bearden said. “Number two, all of the schools that were impacted … are now below 100% capacity, which is the objective we were trying to attain.”

Now that a redistricting draft map has been completed, Pirkle said that they will begin to take public comment from the community before making their final decisions.

A public forum is planned for 6 p.m., on Monday, Oct. 21, at the North Forsyth High School cafeteria to solicit feedback. The school district is also accepting feedback at www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/redistricting until Wednesday, Oct. 23.

Information from the public forum will be presented to the board for discussion at a work session on Nov. 12. The final redistricting map will go before the board for approval at their regularly scheduled meeting on Nov. 19.

Bearden urged local residents to view the proposed map and make comments through the online feedback forum. 

"It is not unusual for us to make changes based on the comments we receive,” Bearden said. “All of that feedback we read and review, but at this point the staff feels good about the draft.”