Student Placement resources

The Maize Board of Education during its monthly meeting Nov. 14 unanimously approved the boundary map as presented last month, finalizing the district's new student placement policy.

This new policy will allow for an improved environment for Maize USD 266 and its students and community. Thank you for your support as Maize USD 266 moves forward to implement this new policy.

In addition to the Q&A below, we have provided several resources to help our families and community navigate this new policy:

Please direct related questions to the Maize Educational Support Center at placement@usd266.com or 316-722-0614.


Student Placement Policy Q&A

All schools at Maize USD 266 provide exceptional opportunities for students, which contributes to a high-quality education.

Please visit this webpage, www.usd266.com/studentplacement, for updates and additional information. 


Questions
1)  What is the policy that the Maize Board of Education is considering?
2)  How did this recommended student placement policy come to be?
3)  When would this recommended policy go into effect?
4)  How is this recommended policy an improvement?
5)  When will the Maize Board of Education vote on the recommended policy?
6)  Can siblings attend school together?
7)  Why does the recommended policy leave elementary school placement as it currently is?
8)  How does busing play in?
9)  How and when will the boundary lines be determined?
10)  Will boundaries change?
11)  Will parents/community members have an opportunity to ask questions/share concerns?
12)  What if I have additional questions?
13)  ADDED AUG. 19: How would a new placement policy affect classes and programs offered to high school students?
14)  ADDED AUG. 19: How would the proposed placement policy affect me/my child?
15)  ADDED AUG. 19: How will boundaries work for students whose parents have shared/split custody?
16)  ADDED AUG. 19: What about the boundary line plans I have seen?
17)  ADDED AUG. 19: What about “legacy,” the practice that younger siblings follow their older siblings through the school system?
18)  ADDED AUG. 19: What about middle schools feeding into high schools?
19)  ADDED OCT. 18: What is the revised policy that the Maize Board of Education is now considering?
20)  ADDED OCT. 18: What is the timeline now for the policy, and how does a boundary map fit into that?
21)  ADDED OCT. 24: Has the Maize Board of Education approved a new student placement policy? What about a boundary map?
22)  ADDED NOV. 1: When will this year’s 8th-grade students elect their high school preference?
23)  ADDED NOV. 1: How will the exemption for current K-5 students who are younger siblings of current middle and high school students work?
24)  ADDED NOV. 1: When will bus stops be known?
25)  ADDED NOV. 1: How do boundaries play into the OneMa1ze vision?
26)  ADDED NOV. 1: How would boundaries change the socioeconomic balance of our student bodies?
27)  ADDED NOV. 1: What are the deadlines associated with the new policy?
28)  ADDED NOV. 1: How was the boundary map developed?
29)  ADDED NOV. 9: How will the new student placement policy affect my elementary school child’s bus stop location?
30)  ADDED NOV. 9: Can current elementary school students opt to attend Maize South Middle School-Maize High School or Maize Middle School-Maize South High School?
31)  ADDED NOV. 9: Can current high school students switch to attend their boundary-assigned school?
32)  ADDED NOV. 9: What is the timeline for and how will our students indicate preference, legacy, etc.?
33)  ADDED NOV. 9: Will there be a showcase event for 8th-grade students this year?
34)  ADDED NOV. 9: Does the new placement policy/boundary change the district’s early childhood programs?
 
Answers
1)  Q What is the policy that the Maize Board of Education is considering?
A

The recommended policy would maintain the district's current placement practice for elementary buildings: Kindergarten through 5th-grade students are placed in any of the district's five elementary schools. Siblings follow siblings in elementary school.

Students in grades 6 through 12 would attend their boundary-assigned middle and high school based on the student's primary residence (that associated with "Family 1" in the Skyward Family Access student management system). Maize Middle School would feed to Maize High School, and Maize South Middle School would feed to Maize South High School. A transition plan would phase in the recommended policy and cause as few disruptions as possible, offering the best educational environment for our students.

Please see the attachment below for the recommended policy as presented to the Maize Board of Education.


2)  Q How did this recommended student placement policy come to be?
A

In 2016, under the guidance of the Maize Board of Education, the district's new Student Placement Policy Team worked to research and develop a recommended policy that provides an equal and fair educational environment.

Previously, the district has not had boundaries dictating which school students attend. Elementary students were assigned to a school based on space, following older siblings' paths when applicable. When a student entered middle and high school, families requested a school preference.

The system posed a challenge to the district because of the uniqueness of the location of school buildings related to our student population: The vast majority of our students and their families live in Wichita, while the majority of our school buildings are in the city of Maize. (Only three schools - Maize South Elementary School, Maize South Middle School, and Maize South High School - are in the city of Wichita.) The Maize School District does not operate neighborhood schools, and it is impossible for most of our students to attend the school building closest to their home.

It became apparent that the district soon would outgrow that method. A preference did not guarantee a student's placement, leading to undue anxiety for some. The system also led to regular and consistent concerns and issues with morale and divisiveness. There were perceived feeder systems, when in fact no schools were tied together in a track.

The Student Placement Policy Team -- consisting of parent volunteers, staff members, students, and two board members -- worked tirelessly to create a recommended policy that meets a number of goals, including reducing anxiety, maintaining peer groups as students advance through the district, improving school spirit, developing K-12 connections, and creating a positive staff climate, maximizing staff and building space efficiency, creating positive community relations, reducing transportation costs, and improving course options.

The process was not done quickly or with the simplest solution in mind: The team studied past surveys and feedback, evaluated how a new policy might add efficiencies, including possible cost savings in transportation. Members examined frameworks, evaluated options, studied enrollment projections and community demographics, edited potential policy, and discussed phasing. The team considered school building capacities and plans for the current bond issue projects.

In order to turn over every stone, the group identified pros and cons of four placement methods: address/boundary (home address dictates school attendance); alphabetical (attendance based on name); first come, first serve (students select schools on preference); and criteria/randomization (students placed randomly based on criteria, similar to current K-5 placement). For its transparency, among other reasons, members overwhelmingly supported address as the preferred method.

The team and district administrators invited anyone to share student placement-related feedback by emailing placement@usd266.com.

3)  Q When would this recommended policy go into effect?
A

Student placement for the 2016-17 school year is in place, and all currently enrolled students know what school building they will be attending. The recommended policy would be implemented for the 2017-18 school year. A transition plan would phase in the recommended policy and cause as few disruptions as possible, offering the best educational environment for our students.

4)  Q How is this recommended policy an improvement?
A

There are several improvements the Student Placement Policy Team has sought to address, including that:

  • It provides long-term certainty. Many students and their parents have shared through the years that not knowing which middle and high school they/their child would attend caused undue uncertainty and stress. This included families who purchased homes and were new to the district and students already enrolled but unsure where they would attend school in as little as a year. 
  • It seeks to end divisiveness among parents, students, and staff members. The existing preference policy the district has operated has required students and their families to select their preferred school. In doing so, this process caused some unintentional strife - and, in some cases, animosity - between schools and their communities, as they either promoted their school's strengths or simply were in the position to choose one over the other.
  • It provides a long-term plan with a positive vision for the future. The recommended policy brings the community together as OneMa1ze with a vision that emphasizes what is best for all students district-wide and celebrates that all of our schools are fantastic educational environments.
  • It is more efficient. The recommended policy will allow the district to be more efficient in its operations and finances, streamlining transportation and balancing building use, staffing levels, and resources. As the student enrollment continues to grow, this student placement plan also allows the district to avoid expensive expansion and construction until it is necessary.
5)  Q When will the Maize Board of Education vote on the recommended policy?
A

Board members have said during previous meetings that they plan to review the policy in depth and allow time for community members to understand the policy and ask questions. There will be community meetings this fall during which community members will be invited to learn more and provide feedback. It is unlikely that board members will take action before their monthly November board meeting on Nov. 7. However, the goal will be to have a policy in place for the 2017-18 school year by the end of the calendar year to allow the district to follow its typical spring enrollment schedule to prepare classes and schedules for the upcoming school year.

6)  Q Can siblings attend school together?
A

Elementary schools: Incoming kindergarten students will follow their older siblings' paths through elementary school, as the district has accommodated in its existing policy.

Middle and high schools:

  • The recommended policy may lead to siblings assigned to attend different schools during the phasing period, but the recommended policy does include a sibling transfer exemption.
  • During the phased transition, secondary students will continue to attend the middle or high school they are attending during the 2016-17 school year. High school students will remain in that school until they graduate. Middle school students will remain in that school until they advance to high school and attend their boundary-assigned high school building.
  • If siblings are assigned to attend different schools during the phased transition, parents may request that their older student(s) change building of preference to align with their boundary-assigned school to attend school with the younger sibling. Students applying for a sibling transfer request must apply by Jan. 1, 2017 to be considered. All requests will be granted as space allows. A committee will be formed to review transfer requests in the event space and/or staffing is not suitable to meet all requests.
  • On the secondary level during the transition phase, the recommended policy has older siblings attending with younger siblings' school assignment (rather than younger siblings following older siblings) so that families can attend the school corresponding to their boundary assignment. This also provides an option that is more manageable for the district as far as student body numbers and logistics.
  • If students transfer high schools during the first year of the policy change, the Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) will allow eligibility, but not for transfers in the years following.
7)  Q Why does the recommended policy leave elementary school placement as it currently is?
A

The current policy -- in which student placement is based on the number of students, class size, and siblings, with placement determined by administration and elementary schools not tied to middle and/or high schools -- has many strengths for Maize USD 266 elementary school students, including:

  • The ability to balance class sizes across the district's five elementary schools, allowing for the lowest student-to-teacher ratio in all classrooms district-wide. Small class sizes is a key component in student success.
  • This eases the transition that would exist from the current policy to the recommended policy.
  • Balanced student demographics in the elementary buildings district-wide.
  • Ideal use of school buildings and teachers and staff members without the need to regularly shift employees from school-to-school.
  • Fewer students will need to change schools in the short-term, and siblings are more easily be able to attend school together.
  • Students district-wide will attend elementary school together, reinforcing the district's OneMa1ze vision.
8)  Q How does busing play in?
A

The district will continue to provide transportation as it does now. The recommended policy,  with middle and high school boundary lines, aims to capture financial savings and a more  efficient route system. The district does not expect that savings to be significant, however,  without changing the way elementary school students are placed in schools.

9)  Q How and when will the boundary lines be determined?
A

The specifics on that are still yet-to-be determined by the Maize Board of Education but likely will unfold early this fall. Please stay tuned to district communications and www.usd266.com/studentplacement for updates.

10)  Q Will boundaries change?
A

As happens nationwide at other school districts, Maize USD 266 expects that it may need to adjust any boundary lines in the future to balance student enrollment and school building capacities in the event of residential fluctuation in the school district. This could apply to new development or other changes and fluctuations. The district aims to incorporate current growth patterns and projections into any proposed boundary lines to avoid any needed changes for as long as possible. The Maize Board of Education would need to take action on any changes, and the district would communicate those potential changes with parents and community in advance of such consideration and official action.

11)  Q Will parents/community members have an opportunity to ask questions/share concerns?
A

Yes. Superintendent Chad Higgins will host community meetings this fall before the Maize Board of Education votes on the recommended student placement policy. The district will publicize the details of those meetings as soon as they are scheduled.

12)  Q What if I have additional questions?
A

If you have additional questions, please email them to placement@usd266.com.

Feedback regarding this important issue will be compiled and shared with members of the Maize Board of Education. The recommended policy is one that board members are considering. It is not final or approved, and board members and Maize USD 266 will continue to strive to create a student placement policy that is best for all students district-wide.

13)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: How would a new placement policy affect classes and programs offered to high school students?
A

The district's goal is to offer to all of our students the opportunity to earn college credit, as well as opportunities to pursue courses based on their career and college aspirations.  Regardless of boundaries, Maize will continue to build and offer courses that are rigorous and align to career interests and current needs in our work-force.

We encourage and support our students who want to earn certificates and/or college credit while attending either Maize High School or Maize South High School.

If a course is offered at only one high school, it is because of either a lack of enrollment requests or the funding necessary to add the additional staffing needed.

As it does now, however, the district will offer such classes/programs to students enrolled at either high school, even if the class is taught only at one high school.

This currently is the case with some courses (AP Biology, EMT, Fire Science I and II, Law Enforcement I and II), but students are allowed to ride a bus or drive themselves to the school where the class is taught.

Additionally, many of these courses will be moved/offered at the Maize Career and Professional Center once it is completed through the current bond project. Prior to this facility opening, the courses will continue to be offered to students at both high schools, regardless of boundaries.

If enrollment and funding could support it, the district would offer identical programs at both high schools. Though transporting students between the schools is not efficient, it is more affordable than adding programs until student enrollment and interest increase enough to justify a different approach. 

14)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: How would the proposed placement policy affect me/my child?
A

To help the community better understand how the proposed placement policy would affect different grades, please consider the examples provided in the attached PDF.


15)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: How will boundaries work for students whose parents have shared/split custody?
A

According to the proposed policy, middle and high school students would attend their boundary-assigned school based on the student's primary residence. That is the home associated with "Family 1" in the Skyward Family Access student management system. As is the procedure now, families who want to change the person identified as the "Family 1" guardian may do so by contacting your building secretary/child's current school.  *The future policy will include limitations on a student's ability to transfer between middle and/or high schools by changing the "Family 1" designation.

16)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: What about the boundary line plans I have seen?
A

Since the Student Placement Policy Team began meeting in January 2016, no boundary lines/plans/proposals have been drafted by the group, the district , or the Maize Board of Education . Any plans being circulated are not part of this proposed policy currently before board members for consideration. Boundary maps being circulated may be an element of previous work done regarding the student placement issue but are not part of this current process. When boundary lines are presented to the Maize Board of Education, Maize USD 266 will make those available to all members of the community.

17)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: What about “legacy,” the practice that younger siblings follow their older siblings through the school system?
A

The siblings-follow-siblings practice will remain on the elementary level, as it has for years in Maize USD 266. On the secondary level, continuing this practice could potentially go on for a decade or more, circumventing the boundary system for an unknown duration. After a transition period, the proposed policy would be fully implemented in 2020. Beginning in the 2020-2021 school year, all siblings would attend school buildings together on all levels, barring exemptions for special programming. During the transition period, students may file for a sibling transfer exemption. This would allow older students to request to change their building of preference to align with their family's boundary-assigned school to attend school with the younger sibling(s). To qualify for the exemption, siblings must be seeking to attend a middle or high school in the same building at the same time at some point during the transition period from 2017 to 2020. Students applying for a sibling transfer request must apply by Jan. 1, 2017 to be considered. All requests will be granted as space allows. A committee will be formed to review transfer requests in the event space and/or staffing is not suitable to meet all requests.

ADDED AUG. 31: Please click to read the attachment for an additional expanded explanation about why the proposed policy moves away from the siblings-follow-siblings model.


18)  Q ADDED AUG. 19: What about middle schools feeding into high schools?
A

Currently, there is no feeder pattern in Maize USD 266 that ties any elementary, middle, and/or high school to one another or guarantees a student's building placement based on the elementary or middle school he/she attends. This is a common misconception and one that in part has spurred the need to explore a new student placement policy. Some perceive there to be feeder systems, when in fact no schools are tied together in a track. However, the proposed policy would tie Maize Middle School to Maize High School and Maize South Middle School to Maize South High School. Once the proposed policy is fully implemented, a middle school-high school feeder system will be in place.

19)  Q ADDED OCT. 18: What is the revised policy that the Maize Board of Education is now considering?
A

During the Oct. 10 Maize Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Chad Higgins provided an overview of the proposed student placement policy, an update and amended version of the draft the Student Placement Policy Team presented in August.

 
The group met twice to discuss the changes, which were options members had considered several months ago. At that time, it had not seemed feasible based on enrollment projections. New data and current enrollment figures, including an overall growth of only 25 students year-over-year (a smaller number than projected), changed that.

 
A key change in the proposed policy is a transition plan that would allow all students attending Maize USD 266 middle schools this school year to select a high school of preference during their 8th-grade year. Those 8th-grade students could choose Maize High School or Maize South High School as a preference. Eighth-grade students who do not indicate a preference would be assigned to a high school by administration as space allows. Students with younger siblings would be placed in their boundary-assigned high school, enabling them to be in the same path as their younger siblings.

 
Students currently in 5th grade and younger would attend their boundary-assigned middle and high schools starting next year, regardless of where their older sibling(s) attend(ed). For the next three years, the district would encourage 8th-graders to consider this when choosing their high school of preference in the case that they want to attend the same high school as any younger sibling(s).

 
Transfer requests would be considered for middle school students only for placement during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years. If a returning middle school student is attending the middle school not in his/her boundary, he/she could request to transfer to his/her boundary-assigned school for the 2017-18 and/or 2018-19 school years.

 
The proposed policy does not include continuing with middle and high school legacy, the practice in which younger siblings follow their older siblings' paths through middle and high school. (Elementary school students would continue to follow older siblings' elementary school path.) Higgins explained that including secondary school legacy with boundaries would make enrollment numbers difficult to predict and manage.

 
Higgins explained that the policy team considered a K-12 feeder system, in which two or three elementary schools would be tied to a specific middle and high school. There are challenges with that option, including the risk of imbalanced elementary classroom sizes throughout the district.


20)  Q ADDED OCT. 18: What is the timeline now for the policy, and how does a boundary map fit into that?
A

Maize Board of Education members will meet at 7 p.m. Oct. 20 at the Educational Support Center, 905 W. Academy Ave. in Maize, to hear community feedback. They will meet at 7 p.m. Oct. 24 at the Educational Support Center, 905 W. Academy Ave. in Maize, to consider action on the proposed policy. Members have not yet looked at any potential maps but could do so during the Oct. 24 meeting. Administrators are developing a map that, among other factors, addresses building capacities and the balance of student demographics.

Following will be two community meetings during which parents and neighbors can share feedback and ask questions about the boundary map. Those meetings will be at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 1 in the auditorium at Maize South High School, 3701 N. Tyler Road in Wichita, and 6:30 p.m. Nov. 2 in the auditorium at Maize High School, 11600 W. 45th St. North in Wichita. These meetings are informational meetings, not Maize Board of Education meetings, and no official vote or other action will be taken.

21)  Q ADDED OCT. 24: Has the Maize Board of Education approved a new student placement policy? What about a boundary map?
A

The Maize Board of Education on Oct. 24 approved a new student placement policy and viewed a proposed boundary map.  Please click here to read the message from Superintendent Chad Higgins regarding student placement and a related boundary map.

22)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: When will this year’s 8th-grade students elect their high school preference?
A

The district has not yet launched the preference process for current 8th-grade students but will do so this fall and will communicate with all 8th-grade families about the process, including the deadline. As in past years, high school preference will not be on a first come, first served basis. 

Current 6th- and 7th-grade students will declare their high school preference when they are in 8th-grade themselves. If they are impacted by the legacy exemption, they may indicate their preference later this semester. (Please see No. 23.)

Those 8th-grade students may choose Maize High School or Maize South High School as a preference. Eighth-grade students who do not indicate a preference will be assigned to a high school by administration as space allows. Students with younger siblings will be placed in their boundary-assigned high school unless their family has elected to apply for the legacy exemption.

23)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: How will the exemption for current K-5 students who are younger siblings of current middle and high school students work?
A

On Oct. 24, the Board of Education approved a student placement policy amendment that allows for a boundary exemption for K-5 of students who have older siblings currently attending a USD 266 middle school or high school. 

All younger siblings eligible for the legacy exemption (those currently in grades K-5 who have an older sibling currently attending a Maize USD 266 middle or high school) must identify which feeder system they want to attend by Dec. 14, 2016.  This applies only to those students whose preference differs from their boundary assignment.

Students who have identified a feeder system will not be eligible to modify their request prior to entering middle school and/or high school, regardless of residence.

Students granted a legacy exemption must waive district transportation. However, students may ride a bus to their out-of-boundary school from a scheduled bus stop. Beginning next year, the district will not schedule bus stops based on those students. Those students could, however, choose to get on a bus at a scheduled stop nearest to them. 

24)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: When will bus stops be known?
A

Maize USD 266 does not set its bus routes and stops for the upcoming school year until the window of time between One Stop Enrollment in late July or early August and the first day of school in August.

25)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: How do boundaries play into the OneMa1ze vision?
A

The Maize School Board has committed to finding a solution that works better for the students and district than the student placement policy that has been in practice for the past several years. The policy that board members approved Oct. 24 aims to improve the culture of the school district and solve some unintentional frustration and animosity that exists. Maize USD 266 still has several hurdles to navigate. While the district won't accomplish its goal overnight, it will take a few years for staff members, students, and parents to adjust to these changes.

The Student Placement Policy Team that developed the original framework of the new policy had goals for a policy that would reduce anxiety, keep peer groups together, boost spirit, build K-12 connections, create a positive staff climate, best utilize faculty and staff members, create positive community relations, decrease transportation costs, and improve course options and selection. 

Please click here to read Superintendent Chad Higgins' January 2016 message "Goal: Student placement policy that is fair, right for OneMa1ze."

26)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: How would boundaries change the socioeconomic balance of our student bodies?
A

The proposed boundary map seeks to better balance various demographics throughout Maize USD 266 schools.

Please click the attached PDF to view charts comparing student statistics.


27)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: What are the deadlines associated with the new policy?
A

Maize administrators are working under the direction of the Maize Board of Education to determine the various deadlines and will clearly communicate the deadlines and process to those families involved:

  • High school preference for 8th-graders: This year's 8th-grade students will have the opportunity to select a preference for their high school attendance next year, regardless of their boundary assignment. Students and their families will indicate a preference this fall/winter by a yet-to-be-determined deadline that will not be before the Maize Board of Education's final approval of a boundary map. (Current 6th- and 7th-grade students will indicate their high school preference during their 8th-grade year.) Once scheduled, Maize Schools will clearly communicate this process (and related deadline) to the families of 8th-grade students.
  • Legacy exemption: There is a boundary exemption for K-5 of students who have older siblings currently attending a USD 266 middle school or high school. All younger siblings eligible for the legacy exemption (those currently in grades K-5 who have an older sibling attending a Maize USD 266 middle or high school) must identify which feeder system they want to attend by Dec. 14, 2016. This applies only to those students whose preference differs from their boundary assignment. Students who have identified a feeder system will not be eligible to modify their request prior to entering middle school and/or high school, regardless of residence.
  • Student Transfer Requests: Transfer requests will be considered for middle school students only for placement during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years. If a returning middle school student is attending the middle school not in his/her boundary, he/she may request to transfer to his/her boundary-assigned school for the 2017-18 and/or 2018-19 school years. Maize Schools has not yet established the exact process and deadline for this request but will do so this fall/winter, based in part on the approval date of a boundary map. Requests will be granted based on the availability of current and future school capacity and staffing availability.
28)  Q ADDED NOV. 1: How was the boundary map developed?
A

A small team of district administrators in consultation with a demographic firm used newly acquired software that incorporates and evaluates numerous pieces of internal and external data. A number of potential boundary lines were evaluated based on building capacity, projected enrollment growth, potential residential growth, racial and socioeconomic diversity, school and student transportation, and clarity. Administrators also studied residential student yield, or the number of students generated per residential unit, which varies across the district. With all of these variables in mind, it would be irresponsible to ignore any one of these variables in the development of the boundary. It would be equally irresponsible to develop the boundary based on perception or influence. We simply had to create a feeder-boundary system that best fit all variables and served the best interest of the district, not just for next year, but for the next decade and beyond.

Based on the policy changes that allow for extended legacy exemption, along with the short-term school preference option and an unpredictable population growth, the district may need to reevaluate the boundary and/or school capacity changes in the future.

One item discussed at recent Maize Board of Education meetings involves the need to add space for middle school students in the near future, regardless of the policy change. The timeline for this need is dependent on the student preference and legacy choices, as well as short-term residential development and student in-migration.

29)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: How will the new student placement policy affect my elementary school child’s bus stop location?
A

Our school buses currently pick up and/or drop off some of our elementary students (those in grades K-5) at locations other than the child's primary residence - daycare locations, extended family members' homes, etc. - for before- and/or after-school care. Currently, the district requires families to select one pick-up location and one drop-off location within the Maize USD 266 boundaries. We do not anticipate making any immediate changes to this component of our transportation services for elementary school students, and it will not be a requirement for elementary school students' bus stops to be located within your child's secondary school boundary. A reminder that the proposed boundary map currently before the Maize Board of Education for consideration does not dictate which elementary school our students attend.

30)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: Can current elementary school students opt to attend Maize South Middle School-Maize High School or Maize Middle School-Maize South High School?
A

No, current elementary school students (those in grades K-5) will not be able to attend Maize South Middle School and then Maize High School or Maize Middle School and then Maize South High School.

On Oct. 24, the Maize Board of Education approved a student placement policy that stipulates that each residential address within the USD 266 district boundary has a corresponding secondary building assignment. Building assignments are aligned in a feeder pattern connecting Maize Middle School to Maize High School and Maize South Middle School to Maize South High School.

Please see No. 23 for additional information regarding how the exemption for current K-5 students who are younger siblings of current middle and high school students will work.

31)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: Can current high school students switch to attend their boundary-assigned school?
A

No. According to the new student placement policy the Maize Board of Education approved on Oct. 24, returning middle and high school students will continue in their assigned buildings until they advance to high school (for middle school students) or graduate (for high school students).

32)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: What is the timeline for and how will our students indicate preference, legacy, etc.?
A

Students/families must respond to the district to indicate their high school preference (for current 8 th -grade students) and wishes regarding the legacy exemption (for families with a current K-5 student). The district will mail a form later this month to families who need to make a decision this year. Families can return the form to the Maize Educational Support Center, 905 W. Academy Ave. in Maize, via mail (postmarked by Dec. 14) or deliver it in-person by 4:30 p.m. Dec. 14.

33)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: Will there be a showcase event for 8th-grade students this year?
A

No. This year, Maize USD 266 will not host high school Showcase events, during which 8th-grade students and their families could visit and tour our high schools. Instead, 8th-grade students interested in scheduling a high school visit/tour may do so directly with either school (or both schools) by calling the high school counseling department(s). Our high school counselors will be happy to work with your family to schedule a visit and/or answer any questions regarding the school. For Maize High School, please call 316-350-2122. For Maize South High School, please call 316-462-8003.

34)  Q ADDED NOV. 9: Does the new placement policy/boundary change the district’s early childhood programs?
A

No. The Maize Early Childhood Center will continue to offer programs, including part-time preschool classes, to our community and their children from birth to age 5. The school currently is housed within Vermillion Elementary School. A new Early Childhood Center is under construction along 37 th Street North northwest of Maize South High School. This was part of the $70.7 million bond issue that voters passed in June 2015. The school building is scheduled to be open in time for the 2017-18 school year, and all classes and related programs will move to the new building.

All Maize USD 266 early childhood students district-wide, regardless of boundary, attend school in either the current location in Vermillion Elementary or the new location (once it opens).