Wed June 18, 2008
KC Election Board Votes on New School Subdistrict Map
By Sylvia Maria Gross
Kansas City, MO – The Kansas City Election Board meets today to redraw the sub-district boundaries in the Kansas City Missouri school district. New subdistricts won't effect where children go to school, but could change the balance of representation of the school board.
The re-districting process began after November's vote to transfer seven schools to the Independence School District. That made one of the Kansas City subdistricts much smaller than the others. The election board will decide between five alternatives - four are similar to the current subdistrict map which splits the city along Troost Avenue. School board member Airick Leonard West says that boundary contributes to divisiveness on the school board.
WEST: It perpetuates a conversation that almost must culminate in an us against them mentality.
West supports creating six horizontal subdistricts that each span the city from East to West. But UMKC professor Linwood Tauheed says that map would split African American communities.
TAUHEED: It's important that this district which is a majority African American district, over 80%, has proper African American representation.
The election board will hear public testimony before the vote today.