Kentucky House Bill 151 (HB151), "the neighborhood schools bill", drafted by Louisville representative Kevin Bratcher, has passed the house. The bill's language has been very deliberately worded to state that only MAGNET SCHOOLS and TRADITIONAL SCHOOLS as defined in the 2016-2017 school year can reserve guaranteed slots for students.
This bill does NOT protect MAGNET PROGRAMS. Magnet programs are the magnets at schools that currently also serve a neighborhood population.
This means that at the elementary, middle, and high school level most magnet programs will certainly disappear since JCPS cannot predict the neighborhood population from year to year, nor can they hold a consistent number of slots for these programs.
This bill means that YOU'D LOSE YOUR CHOICE OF ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS and any magnet programs offered.
MIDDLE SCHOOL PROGRAMS THAT WOULD MOST LIKELY DISAPPEAR INCLUDE:
Gifted and Talented, VA, and Performing Arts at Noe.
Math, Science, and Technology (MST) at Meyzeek, Highland, and Farnsley
Montessori at Westport Middle
Visual and Performing Arts at Western
International Studies at Highland.
ADDITIONALLY, ALL OF THESE HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAMS, AND YOUR CHOICE TO ATTEND THE FOLLOWING SCHOOLS COULD DISAPPEAR:
Doss: Business and Finance, Information Technology
Fairdale: Human Services, Education, International Studies, and Heavy Equipment Science
Iroquois: Engineering, Architecture, and Construction
Pleasure Ridge Park (PRP): Communication, Media, and the Arts
Valley: Medicine, Health, and the Environment •
Western: Early College and Culinary Arts Network 2 •
Fern Creek: Communication, Media, and the Arts •
Jeffersontown: Engineering, Manufacturing, and Construction •
Moore: Medicine, Health, and the Environment •
Seneca: Human Services, Education, International Studies, and Urban Agriscience Technology •
Southern: Business and Finance, Information Technology, Automotive Technology, and Machine Tool & Die Network
Academy @ Shawnee: Engineering, Aerospace, and Global Logistics
Atherton: Human Services, Education, and International Studies •
Ballard: Communication, Media, and the Arts
Eastern: Business and Finance, and Information Technology
Waggener: Medicine, Health, and the Environment
So what can you do?
Call your state senator now and as many as you can possibly call. Your state senator can be found at the link below. Do NOT let them tell you that the bill does not state these programs will disappear. The wording in the bill is very deliberate to exclude magnet programs, and JCPS will now be mandated to fill slots within schools that have magnet programs with other students meaning JCPS will not be able to have a predictable model year after year to create and guarantee slots for magnet programs. Let them know you don't appreciate Frankfort's overreach into local school systems where we already have a democratically elected school board, and let them know what parental choice means to you in JCPS.