Parents: Marjory Stoneman High School Boundary Proposals Disproportionately Affect Black and Lower-Income Students

Mr Impact Broward County
Marjory Stoneman High School Redistricting Meeting

Boundary Meeting on November 3. {Photo by Jonathan Schaefer}

By Jonathan Schaefer

Outraged parents packed Coral Springs Middle School, expressing concern over redistricting proposals for Marjory Stoneman Douglas.

Due to overcrowding at MSD, on Oct 3, Broward County Public Schools held a presentation encouraging residents to submit proposals. On Thursday, community members again met with the district to discuss the 15 proposals to help to ease the capacity at MSD.

In the proposals, Traffic Analysis Zones (TAZ) are adjusted from one school boundary to another to ease overcrowding.

Other considerations included; class size, level of service, diversity, feeder pattern, school proximity, natural barrier impact, and neighborhood integrity.

Proposal C-1 was described by Joseph Beck, a demographer specialist,  as “the least triggering plan.”

C-1 moves 194 students out of MSD to Coral Glades High School with a “phase in” area between Sample, Royal Palm, University, and Coral Springs Drive. 

Several residents spoke up against the proposals stating that the diversity aspect was miscalculated and would disproportionately affect black and lower-income students, taking them out of MSD.  

“MSD has 439 black students. By removing TAZ 107, 653, and 112, the school is losing 98 black students. Twenty-two percent of the entire black student population. This is not representative of Broward County’s diversity,” said Jennifer Levy.

Parents also spoke up against alleged MSD students attending the high school by using fake addresses of family members they do not reside with.

“Vet the kids there illegally before you move a single child out of that school and before you create less value in homes. Before we move people before we change lives, make sure you vet students,” said John Casagrande, who has three children attending MSD. 

Sparks Fly at Marjory Stoneman High School Redistricting Meeting

Taz Zones {Broward MPO}

One member of the community offered an alternative plan that garnered raucous applause.

“I think the best option is to do nothing. However, with the uncertainty of school board members, inflation, social isolation, anxiety in our kids, and so much more, now is not the time to do this,” said Shai Levy.

Coral Springs Vice Mayor Joshua Simmons expressed his frustration.

“I don’t like what this is doing to our community. This will bring out the worst aspects in people, which we saw in the comments.”
The deadline for public comments on the proposals is November 14.

A workshop on school boundaries will be held in January 2023, followed by a review of final boundary recommendations from the superintendent in the same month. Two more public hearings are scheduled for February and March.

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Jon Schaefer

Jon Schaefer
Jon Schaefer has been a resident of Coral Springs most of his life. He is a 2008 graduate of Coral Springs High School and a 2021 graduate of FAU.

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