06 October 2022

Legislature looking at adjustments to district division process

KSL published an article: Bill could address major concern of Orem splitting from Alpine School District that addresses one of the main concerns about splitting Orem into it's own district - Several schools in Vineyard, Lindon, and Orem have borders that include areas in each of the cities. What happens to those students?

Utah law allows any student to attend any public school they wish - regardless of whether they live in the borders of those schools or not, so the answer to this question is - yes, students can continue attending the school of their choice.

However, there still may be concerns about families who have kids attending, for example, Oak Canyon  Junior High (in Lindon) and Timpanogos High School (in Orem), or about the transition period. That's where this bill comes into play.

From the article:

[Rep. Keith] Grover's bill would make it so that if the district lines are drawn in a way that puts a student — like one from Lindon or Vineyard — in a district different than where they live, they will be able to continue attending the school that they had been attending prior to any split that may happen.

"This bill will seek to clarify that, of course, those students will be able to continue to attend the schools they've been attending," Grover said. "We do not want to have any type of disruption to their education. That should be very, very seamless."


Utah Taxpayers Association supports Orem School District

The Utah Taxpayers Association released this statement about the proposed Orem School District:

"With the proper taxable property values in the proposed district and conservative estimates of state funding and federal funding, it is reasonable to conclude that an Orem school district would very likely have sufficient revenue to support itself without the need for a property tax increase. In fact, an independent feasibility study was conducted that came to this conclusion. By our own calculations, if higher taxes were needed, any near term increase would be very modest. If the cities of Lindon and Vineyard were added to the new district eventually as well, the tax base would be even stronger. Finally, in a smaller district that was Orem-centric, Orem taxpayers could better hold the new school board accountable for any proposed bonds or changes in tax rates."

"Orem taxpayers are justified in seeking more local control over their contribution to education, and the Utah Taxpayers Association urges Orem taxpayers to vote in favor of Proposition 2."

Several news organizations published articles on the statement:


"To come to this conclusion, the taxpayers association gathered information from a wide range of sources, including the Utah County assessor, Utah State Tax Commission, Utah State Board of Education and the Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst."

"Both the DEC feasibility study and the Utah Taxpayers Association came to the same conclusion, that a school district was feasible for the city. 
"While it appears some of the information comes directly from the DEC feasibility study, Cannon said, “We did the research ourselves.”
"Cannon indicated that he met with groups both for and against Proposition 2."

20 August 2022

Do Middle Schools Make Sense?

 Perhaps most importantly, Rogers says the one consistency she has found among K–8 schools is that "kids tend to say they feel safer, so there is less of a Lord of the Flies environment" at a critical stage when they are "navigating through social currents. For many kids, it's distracting."

Do Middle Schools Make Sense?

Editorial Suggests Creating a Lehi School District

 "It will be interesting to see how Orem voters react to the district split idea in November. If Orem approves the split, I feel there will be additional pressure from Lehi patrons to follow Orem’s lead and, perhaps, other communities will follow suit."

OPINION: Is a Lehi City School District in our future?

29 July 2022

Mid-sized urban districts (10,000 to 20,000 students) have lower administrative costs per student than larger urban districts

 For those wanting the latest in administrative costs per pupil:

“However, some of the lowest administrative costs per student are among midsize and large districts (i.e., those with student counts of 10,000 to 20,000 students).” p.24
Mid-sized urban districts (10,000 to 20,000 students) have lower administrative costs per student than larger urban districts. p. 33

A Utah State Performance Audit of Public Education Administrative Costs (June2022)

This would be the range that an Orem SD would fall into!

27 July 2022

Opinion: Is ASD accountable to patrons? Former state school board member addresses overcrowding, district split


"Second, the disconnect between Board members is a problem and growing rapidly. Right now, a member of our Board represents substantially more people than a member of our state legislature in the House. This has effectively inverted the notion of local government, making our State government more responsive than our local government. Furthermore, we have ten very large high schools in the District, but only seven board members, making it impossible for board members to know their local schools effectively."

"The obvious solution to most of the District’s problems is to split the District three ways so that each new District could better respond to Orem’s slow growth, the stable growth between Lindon and American Fork, and the rapid growth between Lehi and Eagle Mountain. Not one single candidate will even mention the topic, much less discuss it."

Opinion: Is ASD accountable to patrons? Former state school board member addresses overcrowding, district split