Plan to fix overcrowding problem at OKC schools causing concern for parents

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Parents, students and even officials say there's an overcrowding problem at some Oklahoma City Public Schools and now the district is trying to find a way to fix it.

The school board came up with a plan to move hundreds of students to help balance  enrollment, but some parents may not be happy with the idea.

Tierney Tinnin, spokesperson for Oklahoma City Public Schools, said, "We are a growing district and that growth is really being seen on the south side."

For some students at Capitol Hill High School and U.S. Grant High School, getting to class during passing period can be a problem.

Students and administrators say there are too many kids under one roof

However, officials say that's not the case everywhere.

"We have vacant spaces and classrooms at Douglas Mid-High," said Tinnin. "We have some vacant classrooms at N.W. Classen."

A plan to fix the overcrowding is to fill those empty classrooms and others with around 500 students.

  • Around 200 students from Capitol Hill High School will move to Douglas Mid-High.
  • Around 200 students from U.S. Grant High School will move to N.W. Classen High School.
  • Some students from Shidler Elementary and Wheeler Elementary will move to Douglas Mid-High, not Webster.
  • Some students from Pierce, Rockwood and Westwood Elementary will move to Taft Middle School, not Jefferson.

"We're looking at the proximity to the school, percentage of the birth rate of how population is going," said Tinnin. "We're trying to make it easy as possible for parents. We understand there's going to be some seniors that are not going to want to leave their school, so we're making it part of the proposal that seniors can stay at their school."

The district understands that some parents are worried about transportation, but reassures them busing rules would still apply if their child is on the list to transfer.

Juan Rojano said, "If they live in the area, then, I mean, I think they must stay there."

One parent said overcrowding has been a problem in the school district for years, which is why they opted to put their children in a smaller district.

"I think the schools are overcrowded out here," said Christi Acuna. "I think the smaller schools have enough teachers where they can work one-on-one and I don't think they have it here."

Parents will get a chance to speak up about the plan Tuesday night at 6 p.m. in the U.S. Grant High School auditorium.

The town hall meeting must take place before the school board can vote at the end of this month on what to do for the next school year.

Click here for more information on the proposed changes.

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