Changes coming to Dripping Springs ISD attendance zones

DSISD elementary school attendance zones (DSISD Map)
DSISD elementary school attendance zones (DSISD Map)

DRIPPING SPRINGS, Texas (KXAN) – New attendance zones will be in place for Dripping Springs ISD students next school year. In August, the district will open two new schools, Sycamore Springs Elementary and Sycamore Springs Middle School.

The process to determine new elementary and middle school attendance zones began last fall. Six public forums were held from November through January. “Our district population is not distributed in such a way that everyone can attend the school closest to their home, which led to some agonizing decisions for us,” said Dripping Springs ISD Superintendent Bruce Gearing.

Dripping Springs ISD released this list of key changes for students who are in the district:

  • Moves the Highpointe neighborhood from Dripping Springs Elementary/Dripping Springs MS to Sycamore Springs Elementary/Sycamore Springs MS
  • Moves the Sawyer Ranch and Vistas of Sawyer Ranch neighborhoods from Walnut Springs Elementary/Dripping Springs MS to Sycamore Springs Elementary/Sycamore Springs MS
  • Moves the Rimrock neighborhood and a few streets south of Darden Hill Road from Walnut Springs Elementary/Dripping Springs MS to Sycamore Springs Elementary/Sycamore Springs MS
  • Moves several neighborhoods along 1826 from Rooster Springs Elementary/Dripping Springs MS to Sycamore Springs Elementary/Sycamore Springs MS, including Goldenwood, Reunion Ranch, Friendship Ranch, and Bear Creek, as well as several individual streets
  • Moves some streets off Nutty Brown Road from Rooster Springs Elementary/Dripping Springs MS to Sycamore Springs Elementary/Sycamore Springs MS

Gearing says the district has been dealing with a large amount of growth for years. “We are growing extremely fast. We just went over 6,000 students, we are growing between six and eight percent a year,” he said.

To break that down, that’s about 350 students a year for the district, equivalent to adding an entire grade level. The construction of a new elementary and middle school is expected to manage the increase of students.

“We have the opportunity to split that in half to just over 700 students in each middle school which is much more manageable and we will be able to offer more high level programs to more kids,” said Gearing.

The map of the new middle school attendance zones may look a little uneven, but Gearing points out that due to the density of people moving just outside of Travis County, it all event out. “A large portion of that is open rural land. So, although the existing middle school, the Dripping Springs middle school looks like it has a much larger attendance zone, in terms of population it’s actually equal to Sycamore Springs Middle School,” he said.

At Monday’s meeting, the board also approved a one-year plan to “grandfather” incoming fifth and eighth graders who are zoned to the new schools but would prefer to remain at their current campus. In order to aid parents, siblings of grandfathered fifth and eighth grade students also will be given the option to remain at the same school as their sibling for one year. District transportation will not be provided to grandfathered students.

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