Parents concerned over Seminole Co. school rezoning plans



SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - Seminole County parents could learn Tuesday night whether they're losing a critical choice over where their children go to school.

The district used cluster zones, which allowed parents to pick and choose from schools in each group, so the district could meet federal minority requirements.

But Channel 9's Jeff Deal learned how a new rezoning plan could change all that.

When it comes to schools, Susu Rodriguez chose to send her children to Crystal Lake Elementary.

"It's the best school ever," she said. "Great teachers, great staff, an 'A' school."

Even though it's not the closest one to their home, Crystal Lake is one of a cluster of five schools in the Lake Mary area parents can now send their children to. The idea was introduced in the 1990s to help do away with segregation, but the district said some schools are now overcrowded while others are well below capacity. Therefore, the district is looking to rezone, so they can balance the schools out.

The district told WFTV on Tuesday that it's a way to make sure all schools have a chance to perform well.

But that could be bad news for parents and students who like the choice.

It's possible cluster schools could go away, and it's possible ultimately some schools will close.

On Tuesday, district board members will take a look at rezoning, which is the superintendent's strategy for creating balance.

The meeting is expected to include recommendations on committees who will help plan out how to pick the zones, leaving some parents wondering how it will impact the students.

The exact zones won't be laid out until early next year.