TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The Hillsborough County Public Schools superintendent made the case for his recommend school redistricting plan Monday night during one of five community meetings this week.
“Scenario four was based on the community feedback and being able at the same time be more efficient in our schools than we are,” Superintendent Addison Davis told 8 On Your Side.
It was a crowd of mostly teachers at King High School in Tampa Monday night.
Superintendent Davis told them his plan cuts the number of very overcrowded and very under-enrolled schools from 23 to none. He said this fourth option could save the district more than $14 million annually.
“Any dollar that we save,” Davis said, “my recommendation to the board is put this back into employee compensation. We have got to try to win the talent war here in Hillsborough County.”
The superintendent’s rezoning plan would move about 15,000 students to new schools. Most changes wouldn’t go into effect until the 2024-25 school year.
“I don’t think that necessarily moving the kids is the best way to cut budgets and fix budget things,” HCPS parent Rachele Pawlowski said.
Pawlowski told 8 On Your Side her two children likely won’t have to switch schools.
“I am concerned for kids that may not have people in their corner,” she said, “the kids that are coming down the pipeline.”
Retired teacher Mark Hart serves on the Hillsborough County Diversity Advisory Council.
“Every school should be an A school,” he said.
Hart said he wants to be able to share the details of the superintendent’s proposal with his community and church.
“The community needs to work with the people who are making the decisions also,” Hart said.
The next meeting on Scenario four is Wednesday night at 6 p.m. at Webb Middle School and the final two meetings are Thursday night at Maddison Middle School and Chamberlain High School.
The Hillsborough School Board will vote on the superintendent’s proposal, or some variation of it, at the Tuesday Feb. 28 board meeting.
If it passes, a final vote should take place the following week at the meeting on Thursday, March 9.