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Parents at meeting say proposed SMSD boundary fixes aren’t suitable solutions

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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Overcrowding is becoming a problem in the Shawnee Mission School District. Wednesday night, the superintendent officially presented his plan to fix the problem - but not all parents are on board.

This move is being made according to the district to address overcrowding. There has been concern about overcrowding at Brookridge and Briarwood elementary schools. We heard from a few Mill Creek parents as well, but several parents say the district’s fix won't fix anything at all.

Uprooted from the school they love, that's what several parents say is about to happen to their kids. Chris Muehlberger said if he would have known his child’s transfer was subject to change he would have been able to better evaluate whether the move was worth it.

"In the interim, our children have made friends participated in sports clubs with those friends while Katie and I became active in the PTA,” he said.

One parent brought figures with her from an independent demographer saying that the district should have known the overcrowding was becoming a problem.

“The demographer raised a red flag you are over capacity at Briarwood but the demographer didn't know you were seriously at capacity,” the parent said.

"Predicting student enrollment changes by neighborhood is like predicting the forecast right now, it's a little difficult,” SMSD Superintendent Jim Hinson said.

Superintendent Hinson said parents from both schools have been surveyed. He feels confident that they have a clear message from parents on exactly how to proceed.

Some parents dispute that saying they were never surveyed and they aren’t happy with the change. But Hinson says that's just the way it's going to be for now.

"We have set our course I'm not changing my mind the decision was made and we're doing what's right,” he said.

No action was taken on Briarwood Wednesday night. Superintendent Hinson says they continue to monitor enrollment and that parents there have also been notified about the overcrowding issues.

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