Moore County's Frequently Asked Questions page

Frequently Asked Questions

Updated October 15, 2019

What is a Multi-Year Student Assignment Plan?

Due to the opening of four new elementary schools over the next three years, Moore County School determined that it needed to redraw attendance districts across the county to maximize the utilization of our facilities, address enrollment fluctuations, and recalibrate the demographic balance among our students in terms of academic performance and socio-economic status

Now that the plan is final, when will the Multi-Year Student Assignment Plan begin to be implemented?
Multi-Year Student Assignment Plan will be implemented in a phased approach over two years beginning in the school year 2020/21 and completing in the fall of 2021/22. The district is committed to moving students just once, if they are at all impacted by new attendance lines.  The School Board adopted the following timetables for implementation for 2020/21 and for 2021/22.

How up-to-date is the data the district used to determine anticipated growth in our county?
The forecast being used in this effort was generated by the Operations Research and Education Laboratory (OREd) at the Institute for Transportation and Research at North Carolina State University with data supplied by county and municipal planners as of March 2019. In addition, the assignment planning team will continue to reach out to Moore County planning agencies for updates as the assignment planning process evolves.

What was the process for developing the multi-year student assignment plan?
The development process took place over a nine-month period, culminating in a Superintendent's recommended plan that was presented in September 2019 and a final plan was adopted by the School Board on October 14, 2019.

The district retained the services of Numerix, a consulting firm, that provides data-driven decision support for public school planners. Those consultants worked with an Advisory Committee over the first five months that provided input throughout the process, as well as helped the district communicate the progress of the School Board to their respective communities, and promote engagement of their communities in the process.

The process began with three community forums, one in each high school feeder area, to present an overview the current situation of attendance lines and the process going forward. The first two drafts for new attendance lines were presented at School Board work sessions and unveiled at four Community Input Meetings open to the public. An online portal was created to allow for questions or comments from the public. A public hearing was held on the Superintendent's recommended plan on September 12. Technical and other adjustments were made to the Superintendent's recommended plan at the Board of Education Work Session/Special Called Meeting on October 7, 2019. The School Board adopted the final plan for the multi-year student assignment plan at the October 14, 2019, regular business meeting.

Who served on the Advisory Committee?
Advisory Committee Membership included the principals from the district's three high schools, Stefanie Phillips from Pinecrest High School, Jenny Purvis from North Moore High School and Andy McCormick from Union Pines High School. Additional committee members included Central Office staff; and a teacher, principal and parent from each impacted school.

How is the School Board ensuring community input and feedback?
Information about the process and the timeline was posted on the district website along with several online portals to submit comments on various iterations of the plan. All previous submissions to the online portal were documented with the Advisory Committee, as well as the School Board and district administration. All presentations regarding the student assignment initiative, along with a video, if available, are also posted on the district webpage dedicated to the student assignment plan process.

In addition to the three initial community forums recently held throughout the district, a total of four additional community input meetings were held following the presentation of drafts 1 and 2 of the plan. Finally, a public hearing was held on September 12 at 6 p.m. at Union Pines High School to collect public comment on the Superintendent's Recommended Plan. An online portal on the Superintendent's recommended plan was also available until Friday September 20. The public also provided comments during regular business meetings of the School Board.

What is the School Board using to guide the development of the student assignment plan?
During the spring of 2018, MCS staff and the consultant team worked with the MCS Board to develop a list of Guiding Principles which will be used to provide direction during the assignment planning process in the areas of Balance, Planning, Efficiency and Community.

What legal statute gives the School Board the authority to redraw student assignment lines?
N.C. General Statute 115C-366 gives the School Board the authority to redistrict. Specifically, it states: "Each local board of education shall assign to a public school each student qualified for assignment under this section. Except as otherwise provided by law, the authority of each board of education in the matter of assignment of children to the public schools shall be full and complete, and its decision as to the assignment of any child to any school shall be final."

How will I know if my home will be assigned to another attendance area?
By either viewing an interaction PDF map or by utilizing an online address lookup software feature. Both tools will be made available as soon as they are updated to reflect the final adopted plan. 

How long will the final plan remain in place until we need to go through this process again?
Every effort is made to reduce the likelihood of assignment changes in the near future. However, as Moore County Schools parents are already aware, the reputation of quality schools in the district makes MCS an attractive option for those families moving into the area and it is likely many schools in the district will continue to see growth.

What is being done to ensure neighborhoods were not split in the new assignment plan?
Keeping neighborhoods intact was implied in the Guiding Principles and was a very important consideration when examining assignment changes. However, other factors such as building capacity and anticipated future growth sometimes conflict with these goals. The assignment plan that was adopted aims to create balance between conflicting issues with a goal of healthy schools over the entire district.

Are middle and high school attendance areas going to be impacted?
Yes, middle and high schools are impacted.

Will students be allowed to stay at their current school if they want to?
The School Board adopted an "allowable" transfers policy that allows for two types of transfers. First are "proactive" transfers in that if a student is being moved to a new school in the future, the parents may enroll their child earlier in that school to avoid having to change schools. An example would be if a parent has a current 8th grader that would be changing high schools at some point under redistricting, the parent could go ahead and enroll that child into the redistricted school. Second is to allow rising 5th, 8th, 11th and 12th graders to remain at their current school through the transfer process. Please click here for the plan for transfers the School Board adopted. 

How did the district address transportation and traffic concerns?
The planning committee worked with transportation engineers with Ramey Kemp & Associates to perform comparative analysis of current and proposed school transportation times at selected locations, and to perform a survey of the heavily traveled and congested corridors of Route 5, Route 15/501 and the traffic circle in Pinehurst. The committee also had Ramey Kemp & Associates evaluate the bus route times for the district to develop reporting by attendance area, school grade level and the district of minimum, maximum, average and median bus route ride times. Finally, the Board of Education adopted several technical adjustments to the Superintendent's recommended plan to account for transportation impacts. See the final multi-year student assignment plan for more information.

What is being done to improve school performance?
In North Carolina, schools are assigned letter grades as an indicator of school performance. The grade is weighed 80% on proficiency and 20% on growth. The N.C. General Assembly is currently considering legislation to overhaul the matrix used to assign letter grades to schools. To improve school performance, each school develops a school improvement plan. All school improvement plans can be accessed by clicking here.

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