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Batavia Highlands parents plan to continue protest

GENEVA – Parents of the Batavia Highlands subdivision, who do not want their children moved from Williamsburg to Western Avenue school, plan to continue their objections Monday, which is when the Geneva School District 304 board is expected to take action on the move.

The school board meets at 7 p.m. at Williamsburg Elementary School, 1812 Williamsburg Ave., Geneva.

A task force that examined a change in attendance boundaries recommended 16 children from the Batavia subdivision – which is in the Geneva school district’s boundary – be moved. 

Parents have been protesting since, saying the move will not save the district money, will not equalize student populations at its elementary schools and will disrupt their children’s lives.

“They are totally singling us out,” said Heather Anderson, one of the parents. “There is no reason to move our kids.”

Other parents said they have sent emails to school board members and received responses – but no answers to their questions.

Board president Mark Grosso said the board will hear a presentation on the task force’s findings at the meeting.

“When we hear the report, we will be able to ask the boundary task force questions, have public comment and hear from parents,” Grosso said. “The board will determine if [it meets] the criteria we set for relocating neighborhoods.”

Children from the Batavia Highlands neighborhood have been moved three times in the past, and five years ago, a recommendation to move them again was voted down by the board. 

Christine TreDenick, a parent who led the charge five years ago, said her concern was that the task force first considered moving three areas, and now it was down to Batavia Highlands only – again.

“My kids are in middle school and high school now, but I’m trying to be a voice of reason,” TreDenick said. “In reality, it’s not that many students and that’s not going to balance anybody out. Sixteen or 20 kids should not make any difference to the school board.”

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