There has been a lot of discussion lately about the future of the Edgewood Plaza. Will the developer find a way retain the original Eichler style? What will happen to the building that Albertson’s will be vacating soon? All good questions, but what about the inclusion of the proposed residential units that the developer has described in previous “Weekly” articles as “below-market-rate units” and the impact on Duveneck Elementary School?
Duveneck Elementary has been struggling with the issue of overflowing students to schools all over town for some time now. Back in March, the school board was discussing the need to increase the enrollment cap for Duveneck and two other elementary schools from 450 to 520 students. The reason given is that the school populations of the Duveneck neighborhood and the other two areas has grown the most because they're closest to the most residences in Palo Alto.
Add to this mix the situation with the kindergarten class for the next school year. Duveneck has informed neighborhood families with incoming kindergartners that the school doesn’t have enough room for all the incoming students. They are planning to overflow 25 kindergarten-aged children to either Briones or Barron Park schools located across town. No word has been given on when or if there will ever be room for that number of overflowed students to attend their neighborhood school.
Given this situation, is anyone looking at how the school district will handle more students from the proposed residential units in an area of town where there simply isn’t any more room for more students? You can be sure that if residential units of any type are available for sale in the Duveneck school boundaries, families with children will want to buy them. Until some definitive long-range plans are put into place to accommodate the existing residents, how can new residential units be added in good conscious? Hopefully this issue will be examined closely before any plans are finalized.