By Madeline Coats / Bothell-Kemore Reporter
MALTBY — Estimated growth projections show a need to shift enrollment boundaries in the Northshore School District.
In an attempt to better balance enrollment numbers over the next few years, about 250 students will need to shift from North Creek High School to the Bothell High School feeder campuses. Any students already enrolled in either of the high schools will be allowed to continue attending their preferred school.
Beginning this fall, incoming freshmen in the affected boundaries will be assigned to Bothell High, although they will be able to get a waiver to attend North Creek. Those who choose to transfer into North Creek would be allowed to finish high school there, as well as be provided transportation to and from school.
Siblings entering high school after the upcoming school year will be required to attend Bothell High. They will not be able to get a waiver into North Creek to be with a brother or sister. Likewise, any student new to the district will be automatically enrolled into Bothell High.
The district’s Enrollment Demographics Task Force has made recommendations to balance enrollment numbers in anticipation of growth. It also aims to work toward acquiring more property to address future growth.
“Our Enrollment Demographic Task Force that works on the boundary adjustments is both community and district based,” said district chief operations officer Joe Paperman. “All those meetings are open and all the documents are up on the website … We are trying to involve the community.”
Based on 2020 enrollment estimates, the boundary adjustment would reassign 169 North Creek students to Bothell.
There is also a proposed boundary adjustment for the 2020 school year that involves Canyon Creek, Fernwood and Kokanee elementary schools as well as Leota and Skyview middle schools.
Voters in 2018 approved a $275 million ballot measure to ease overcrowding across the district.
“For the school districts to get additional money locally, we have to get voter approval on the operating side,” said Paperman, adding that the work on school boundaries started back in 2015 in preparation for 2020 expansions.
This 2018 measure included a new elementary school and the expansion of Canyon Creek Elementary School and Skyview Middle School. The projects are scheduled to open September 2020.
Statistics from the enrollment task force indicate that adjustments to the boundaries for Canyon Creek would result in reassigning 20 Kohanee students and 111 Fernwood students. Skyview, which is attached to Canyon Creek, would gain 51 students from Leota Middle School.
The expansion of Skyview and Canyon Creek will add a building with 30 classrooms to the campus. The new building will be placed between the two schools and designed for elementary children on one floor and middle school students on the other. The intended budget for the development is $50 million.
According to projected enrollment in 2020, the addition of the new elementary school would reassign 127 students from Kokanee, 282 students from Fernwood and 34 students from Canyon Creek.
Paperman said they decided to temporarily overload Fernwood and Kokanee in anticipation of the new elementary school.
The new elementary school, otherwise referred to as Elementary No. 21, is located on Maltby Road and will have a capacity of 500 students.
“As long as we have continued growth, we’re going to have to continue to add capacity,” Paperman said. “There are just naturally going to be boundary adjustments.”
This story originally appeared in the Bothell-Kenmore Reporter, a sibling paper to the Herald.