Sunday, April 22, 2007

Redistricting Completed

All in all, the redistricting effort appears to have been completed successfully. The Board deliberated in public for six hours, ending the public part of the meeting at 1:30am. While there were much fewer people at the beginning of the meeting than I expected (no more than 100), perhaps half stayed to the bitter end. It was clear to me after a couple of hours that the Board was honoring the requirement to deliberate in public, but after admonishing them at the prior meeting to be sure that they obeyed the Ohio Sunshine Laws, it would have been very disrespectful of me to have left before they finished their task.

Not that there weren't things to be annoyed about. The Ballantrae contingent also stayed to the bitter end to ensure that their neighborhood remained assigned to Davidson High School. They seem to have some problem with Darby, apparently thinking it is a school riddled with undesirable elements, according to the comments they wrote on district website.

I had one Ballantrae resident tell me that the Hilliard City School District should just let Ballantrae shift to Dublin City Schools, as they are more of a Dublin community that a Hilliard one anyway -- whatever that means. I said that was okay with me as long as they keep paying for the construction levies associated with Washington Elementary and their share of the rest of the schools their kids attend now. Or we could just sell Washington Elementary to Dublin Schools.

Well done Board. I have one suggestion however: with the skills you have in your IT department, it was a shame for you guys to sit in this meeting with PCs in front of (most of) you and yet be playing with numbers by hand using notebooks of printed reports that (most of) you brought to the meeting. It would have been no more than a few day's work for one of the district IT staffers to build you a spreadsheet that would have allowed you to see the effects of your changes in real time. You could have ever projected charts on the screen for the whole audience to see. If you want to see such a spreadsheet, let me know -- I built one last fall for the redistricting team and let the IT folks review it. They really should have equipped you better.


  1. Paul:

    I enjoy reading your blog.

    You've posted exerpts on your blog from redistricting messages that people have sent to the district via its web site. I wonder, are those messages available for the public to read? If they are, how could I access them?

    Thank you!

    Chris White

  2. Chris:

    I do have the file of the comments, and have considered posting it. However, I want to scrub it for names and addresses first, and just haven't the time to do so.

    I encourage you to contact Tim Hamilton's office and request a copy of the comments under the public disclosure provisions of Ohio law. If you decide to do so, let me know if your request is honored.

    Thanks for the feedback.


  3. I personally was happy with the redistricting, I do not care about who makes more money, and who is an undesirable neighbor. Coming here from Dublin, I am happy with Hilliard people. The redistricting had to be done, but there is one flaw for us. Our area, Cross Creek was moved from Station for 6th grade to Tharp. This seems odd for me living near Hilliard Rome road and having Station so close. What concerns me is the busing. I have a 6th grader this year and we share buses with Heritage. How will that work next year for others? I think it seems wasteful for buses to come into Cross Creek just for 6th graders to go to Tharp when they can ride the bus with the 7th and 8th graders who go to Heritage now and drop them off before going to Station. Seems like extra work. Plus, the kids will go to Tharp where about 75% will go on to Weaver/Memorial and then Davidson. My youngest will go to Tharp for one year, then come back this way to go to Heritage. 6th grade is a HUGE year for making friends. I think it'd be nicer to have the kids go to school where most of them will follow through to the same Middle and High school. There's too many kids in Hilliard to always be throwing into the mix. I still have friends from Middle and High School, some even from Elementary school and I would never have met them if I would have been mixed with different kids year after year. It's almost like moving your child to a whole new district. New school and kids for 6th grade, then more for 7th and 8th, then once Bradley is done, a mix again for High School.