Superintendent recommends more time for middle-school placement 

The cries from parents over the elementary to middle school feeder patterns in the new student assignment system have been heard: Monday Superintendent Carlos Garcia will recommend the district take another year to develop that pathway.

In August, the San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education released proposals for elementary-school attendance areas and middle-school feeder patterns to mixed reviews.

Some parents worried the new middle-school feeder limited their choice in schools, while others did not agree with the middle school chosen. Dozens of McKinley parents made their voices heard to the district’s ad hoc student assignment about their feeder to Everett, saying they worked hard to bring up the elementary school’s test scores, only to have McKinley feeding to a lower-performing middle school.

Garcia will recommend the board adopt the elementary and high-school placements, but take another year to work on the middle-school placement.

For the 2011-12 school year, he will also recommend the board revise the middle-school placement to give preference to applicants moving from fifth to sixth grades by using sibling preference, then test scores, then all other students, according to district officials.

“We are still committed to enacting the new placement policy in its entirety,” Garcia said in a released statement. “Next fall we will have even more opportunities for middle-school students and their families than those currently available and we’d like to get those in place before we institute the feeder patterns.”

The full board is expected to vote on the attendance areas and feeder patterns at the Sept. 28 meeting.

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