After six months of discussion the Fort Mill School Board Tuesday approved an attendance zone realignment plan set to take effect next school year.
The realignment takes into account for the two new schools being built and the future growth of Fort Mill, directly affecting approximately 30 percent of the district’s 5,419 K-5 students.
Superintendent Chuck Epps said that recent discussions with Fort Mill, Tega Cay and York County planners show an estimated 10,000 new homes coming to 32 developments in the next few years, and he’s trying to stay ahead of the curve.
“We do not know when [the schools] are going to fill up,” Epps said. “But at least this gives us a blueprint to plan by. And that’s all we can do.”
By land mass, Fort Mill District Four is the smallest district in South Carolina, but it’s one of the fastest growing parts of the Palmetto State. Next year, Tega Cay and Doby’s Bridge Elementary Schools will come online, and Epps says to expect a tenth school soon.
The plan, however, did not come without some criticism from parents who uneasy with the number of students on free or reduced lunch.
Fort Mill School Board chairman Patrick White dismissed the criticism.
The intent was never to make everyone happy,” White said. “It was to have a plan that was fair for all the children in our elementary schools.”
For a full district breakdown of the new attendance zone changes, click here.
Superintendent Chuck Epps is now charged with implementing the new attendance zones, including reassigning teachers and staff to the two new facilities that will come online for the 2014-15 school year.