Some Gautier Parents Upset With School District Rezoning - - The News for South Mississippi

Some Gautier Parents Upset With School District Rezoning

Some parents say they are outraged by the Pascagoula School District's decision to change the schools zones in some Gautier neighborhoods.

To ease overcrowding at Martin Bluff Elementary, the district wants to move more than 30 students to Singing River Elementary next year.

Brandi Kinsey said she was shocked when her daughter brought home a letter on the last day of school saying she will no longer be a student at Martin Bluff Elementary.

"You never hear any bad about this school. It is a level 5. It is just a great school and community," Kinsey said.

Michelle Carter's little brother also brought a letter home. Just 11 months ago, his family moved to the area to attend the level 5 school.

"They moved to the neighborhood to go to the school, and they are being moved out. They're upset, says Gautier Resident Michelle Carter.

The Carters aren't the only ones who recently moved to the area. And that's part of the problem. Since Katrina, the increase in Hickory Hills residents has caused the student population at Martin Bluff to rise.

In order to handle the overcrowding issue, school district officials want to rezone some of the neighborhoods. That means students in some Gautier neighborhoods would have to relocate from Martin Bluff Elementary to Singing River Elementary.

"We pay taxes here for the school. And they are replacing permanent residents with temporary residents that do not pay taxes. It is not fair," says Kinsey.

School Board President Dick Paul says the rezoning decision is not a done deal. He says the administration is looking at options to keep kids at Martin Bluff.

"Better use of facilities which we can consolidate and we can create some vacant space that we can divide up other classes into," says School Board President Dick Paul.

Paul says while he does agree that moving from one school to the other can be tough on some kids, the district's goal is to make provide an excellent learning environment for all students.

By Patrice Clark

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