Parents react to proposed redistricting plan for Chesterfield schools

Chesterfield County

Hundreds of children in Chesterfield could be changing schools as the district may have to shift around students to balance enrollment.

The Chesterfield School Board introduced a two-part redistricting plan, with a proposed 200 students moving from Manchester Middle to Providence Middle. The plan will also add another center-based gifted program and move 100 to 150 children into it

An emotional meeting took place at Manchester Middle School on Thursday night, after more than 35 parents showed up to voice their concerns about the proposed plan.

Crystal Jones, a Chesterfield parent, spoke with 8News about the inconvenience the change will bring.

“It’s just going to be a put out for me having to go further away; we have a school literally in our backyard.”

Jones told 8News that the redistricting, along with Chesterfield’s recent start time shift, has made her life a bit more stressful.

“With the time changes, I have to be at two different places at once. And I don’t like my kids riding the school bus so I’m going to have to find a way and my husband works out of town during the week so it’s all on me.”

Christina Tucker, Jones’ neighbor and fellow Chesterfield parent, didn’t mince words.

“I’m gonna be upset, I can tell you that. I’m going to be very upset.”

Sameatria Cobbs told 8News that she’s frustrated because her child just got adjusted at Manchester Middle School.

“My current 6th grader had a rough transition and we kinda got him on the right path and now he’s having to change again to start all over,” Cobbs said.

Tim Bullis, the spokesperson for Chesterfield County Public Schools, informed parents that the change will not impact the education their child receives.

“There’s not going to be a difference in the education the students receive when they go from Manchester to Providence Middle School so we’re excited about the transition process.”

Many parents feel like the School Board already made up their mind about the redistricting.

“But I know that Chesterfield County that when they make up their mind, they’re gonna do what they want.”  

The school board will vote on the proposed redistricting on April 10.

Letters informing the impacted families will go out the following day.

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