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BISD plans town hall on limits

January 8, 2019

The Brownsville Independent School District will hold a town hall meeting to discuss a proposal to adjust district boundaries to more closely correspond to Brownsville city limits.

The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday at Manzano Middle School, 2480 W. Alton Gloor Blvd.

The BISD Board of Trustees at its Dec. 11 meeting passed a resolution reaching out to area legislators and school districts whose boundaries overlap the Brownsville city limits "so that we can discuss a feasibility plan to either exchange or collapse boundaries to better serve Brownsville students."

The main school district in question is the Los Fresnos Consolidated Independent School District, which quickly passed its own resolution opposing Brownsville’s move. At issue is the area n orth of Alton Gloor Boulevard and east of Interstate 69, which includes The Woods subdivision, where three homes were listed for sale Monday at prices ranging from $239,000 to $365,000.

The Los Fresnos board passed its resolution at a meeting Dec. 20, during which board members pointed out that many home owners had purposely bought property in the Los Fresnos district so their children could attend Los Fresnos schools. The district consistently receives high marks on state accountability tests and scores high on other academic measures.

Two elementary schools in the area in question, Olmito Elementary and Rancho Verde Elementary, have won the National Blue Ribbon School award.

Members of the public will have the opportunity to make comments at Wednesday’s meeting.

The entire process of boundary adjustment is covered by Chapter 13 of the Texas Education Code, which generally requires voter approval or legislative action for any changes to take place.

In a statement posted on its website, BISD said this about the process:

"The Board of Trustees and Superintendent desire this to be a transparent process and are seeking input from all community stakeholders regarding the boundaries set in the early formation of BISD to the north and east of Brownsville ISD. This will allow opportunities for compromise to better serve students in our adjacent areas. The process for any district boundary adjustment requires local and State support before any formal action takes place. At the December meeting the board voted to move forward to initiate the discussion and explore possible adjustments of district boundaries."

glong@browsvilleherald.com

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