Many students rezoned in Richmond County

With the opening of one school, the closing of another and efforts to "rightsize" others, back to school could prove a little more confusing than usual for some Richmond County parents.

About 1,400 Richmond County students were rezoned by the school board. In all, 27 schools were affected in some way. Of those, 17 schools are receiving students who have been rezoned and 10 schools will be losing students to other schools.

Students were shuffled around in south Richmond County to make way for the new Pine Hill Middle School, a $15 million, 115,000-square-foot facility on McElMurray Road.

The new school, which is to open this week, is drawing students from Hephzibah, Spirit Creek and Sego middle schools.

As Pine Hill is set to open, another middle school has closed.

Tubman Middle School will no longer function as a traditional school. It is currently closed for major renovations. When it reopens, the school will house the alternative center, evening school and other education programs.

Tubman's seventh-graders were dispersed to neighboring middle schools. The school's eighth-graders will attend Laney High School. Tubman didn't have a sixth grade.

Even more students were rezoned when the board took "rightsizing" actions, which are meant to make the best use of the school system's facilities. Some students at the Academy of Richmond County were rezoned to Laney and Josey high schools to relieve overcrowding.

And children at Milledge Elementary were moved to Lamar Elementary during its reconstruction. That move shifted some students at Lamar to Craig-Houghton Elementary School.