Henrico Schools proposes school construction as part of expanded redistricting process

Henrico, Va., Oct. 24, 2019 – As part of its ongoing comprehensive redistricting efforts, Henrico County Public Schools is proposing to construct a new elementary school in the Fairfield District, and expand one of the county’s middle schools. Both projects would be completed by the 2022-23 school year and would address current and future school overcrowding concerns. At the elementary level, this would likely relieve long-term concerns over increasing enrollment mostly around Greenwood and Longdale elementary schools. Both projects would be funded through future capital improvement budgeting. The proposal was presented by HCPS staff members to the School Board today at its regularly scheduled work session.

The current redistricting process, originally slated to be implemented for the 2021-22 school year, may see some boundaries take effect in 2022-23 when the new construction is completed, or be phased in over two years, starting in 2021-22. This would prevent families from being moved more than once during the process. In brief:

  • Today, for the first time, HCPS proposed a new elementary school in the Fairfield District and a middle school expansion project at a middle school to be determined.
  • As a result, the redistricting process will now include a change in order to populate the new elementary school and the larger middle school.
  • The new elementary school and middle school expansion are being proposed in order to relieve some of Henrico’s most significant existing and projected school overcrowding.
  • While the process of redistricting will still move forward, the need for changes to attendance boundaries in other areas of Henrico County would be reduced.
  • In order to allow for the proposed school construction, the effective date of new redistricting boundaries may be delayed or phased in over two school years.
  • The proposal was precipitated by a school division analysis, presented to the Board today, that includes new projections for student enrollment and home construction. The analysis is based on newly available preliminary data and indicates a need for a middle school expansion, as well as a new Fairfield District elementary school. Henrico County is acquiring land large enough for a new elementary school in the River Mill subdivision, in the Fairfield District. The subdivision is under construction in northern Henrico County, west of U.S. Route 1 and north of Interstate 295.

    The ongoing work of the redistricting committee will now include assigning students to new buildings that were not previously considered.

    Two redistricting presentations and “gallery walks” that were previously scheduled will still be held. The Nov. 7 presentation will be at L. Douglas Wilder Middle School, 6900 Wilkinson Road, in Henrico. A presentation Nov. 13 will be at Mills Godwin High School at 2101 Pump Road. Both sessions are at 6:30 p.m.