LM redistricting plan met by protesters

January 5, 2009 12:28:58 PM PST
Students and staff returning from winter break in Lower Merion School District faced protesters this morning. The demonstrators gathered outside of the school administration building in Ardmore to fight a proposed redistricting plan.

Under Plan 3-R students in South Ardmore and Narberth will be split up and sent to two different high schools. One half will be bussed past the nearby Lower Merion High School to Harriton High School in Bryn Mawr. The other half will attend Lower Merion.

Some feel that the plan is discriminatory because the divide splits a significant African American student population.

The following is a statement released by the Lower Merion School District:

"The District recognizes and respects the concerns of community members regarding redistricting. No matter which high school our students attend -- Harriton or Lower Merion -- they will receive an educational experience recognized as one of the finest in the country. The redistricting challenge is one of geography and equity - we are building two schools of equal size and attempting to balance enrollments and equalize academic opportunities in a community where 70-percent of the population lives closer to Lower Merion High School. Under the proposed plan no student would have to switch schools and existing school feeder patterns would be maintained K-12. The plan affects the fewest number of students while achieving the community goals of balanced enrollments and educational equity."

This is not the first time the plan has caused a public outcry.

Previous drafts of the plan have also been met with similar opposition over the past few months.

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