QCUSD defines boundaries for new high, elementary schools

Eastmark High School and a new elementary school have boundaries after the Queen Creek Unified School District Governing Board discussed and approved by a vote of 4-0 the perimeters for both schools at its Tuesday, Oct. 16 meeting.

The school board discussed the boundaries in the study session where district staff presented several options. Later in the meeting, Dr. Cort Monroe, assistant superintendent of student learning, presented recommendations for the two schools’ boundaries.

The Queen Creek Unified School District high school boundaries. The area in blue represents Eastmark High School’s boundaries. (Map courtesy of QCUSD)

The boundaries focus on the school district’s northernmost portion, including parts of south-east Mesa.
For Eastmark High School, which is slated to open next July, the southern boundary follows Queen Creek Road from the district’s easternmost boundary at Meridian Road to Rittenhouse Road. It then follows Rittenhouse Road to Sossaman Road.

Sossaman, Warner and Meridian roads all box in the new school’s boundaries.

This would make Queen Creek High School’s boundaries follow the dividing line to the north, with Meridian and Empire Roads making the eastern and southern boundaries, respectively.

On the west side, the boundary follows Sossaman Road until it hits Ocotillo Road. It then veers south on 188th Street toward Empire Road.

“Why we think the board can have a lot of confidence in this recommendation is we’re not dividing our high school … by towns or cities,” Dr. Monroe said during the meeting. “We’re becoming one unified school district.”

Dr. Monroe also pointed out these boundaries don’t split the Newel K. Barney Middle School feeder, meaning all students who attend that middle school would attend Queen Creek High School.

Queen Creek Unified School District elementary school boundaries. Elementary School No. 7’s boundaries are gray at the top of the map. (Map Courtesy of QCUSD)

For the new elementary school — referred to as Elementary School No. 7 — the boundaries will follow Signal Butte Road from Warner Road to Ray Road. It then follows Ray Road west until Crismon Road, then veering south to Germann Road. This will be the dividing line between the new school and Gateway Polytechnic Academy.

The rest of the new school’s boundaries include Warner and Germann roads to the north and south, respectively. The western boundary follows Ellsworth Road from Germann Road to Ray Road, then heads west along the northern edge of the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport before reaching the Sossaman Road alignment and heading north to Warner Road.

“A consideration is this keeps Cadence together. This keeps the Eastmark community together and it does not divide those neighborhoods,” Dr. Monroe said. “(Another) important consideration is it is going to better balance our schools. (Gateway Polytechnic Academy) and Elementary School No. 7.”

QCUSD families have the option to open enroll their children into their preferred school, pending space and program capacity but parents would need to provide their own transportation.

Board member Jennifer Revolt said she was happy with the boundaries as outlined.

“I don’t think there’s ever a perfect situation or a perfect choice but I think this one made the most sense to all of us,” she said.

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