A message from our Principal
March 8, 2021
Dear Archer Parents:
Since the Board of Education retreat last weekend, there seems to be a great deal of confusion and inaccurate information circulating regarding Archer and the district’s Master Facilities Plan.
Archer is being rebuilt as a new school because it has one of the worst facility condition ratings in the district, according to an extensive study by an outside firm that began in 2018 and was completed in 2019. The study serves as the foundation of the GCS Facilities Master Plan, which the school board approved in 2019 after months of discussion and public meetings.
The plan’s goal is to give all families access to high quality facilities while strengthening educational programming and ensuring more equitable access to magnet schools and other choice options. Enrollment trends analyzed as part of the planning process show that families are already opting out of schools at a high rate in the Smith High feeder pattern in which Archer is located; the plan moves the Montessori program to Archer to expand choice is this area.
It’s important to note that the plan to rebuild Archer to house the Montessori magnet program is not new; it has been included in the Master Facilities Plan since its adoption in 2019. The district has shared information about the plan dozens of times during the past three years and the plan has been the focus of multiple public meetings and discussions with the school board, county commissioners and others.
Some additional information that might be helpful for parents and staff to know includes the following:
- Archer is not being vacated this year and we do not plan on dispersing students to other schools this year. In fact, construction will not likely begin until 2023-24. We do not anticipate the new school opening until August of 2025. Current Archer 5th graders would be in high school at that time.
- When educational programs and schools are transitioning, the district offers parents/guardians the option of choosing another school to attend to limit later disruptions. During construction, students are housed temporarily at other nearby schools until the new facility is completed. The reality is that other than our current kindergartners, current Erwin and Archer students will transition to middle and high school prior to the new school opening.
- Rising kindergartners will be able to attend Archer next school year and will also be given the option to exercise the choice to attend other schools in Guilford County.
- In addition to Archer, Peck Elementary School is also slated to become a magnet school in the Smith High School feeder pattern. The Superintendent also plans to recommend to the Board to transition Foust Elementary School into a magnet given the high demand for choice in our community. There is no area in Guilford County that has more parent requests to opt out of neighborhood schools than the Smith High School area in which Archer Elementary is located.
- The school name has not yet been determined; the Superintendent’s recommendation to the Board will be to include Archer in the new school name.
- While magnet schools use lotteries for admission, neighborhood students receive a preference to attend while also being afforded the opportunity to apply to the District’s many other high-quality magnet options.
- Having a racially, culturally and economically diverse student body is a goal of every GCS magnet school. Montessori education is a globally recognized program that I strongly believe will meet the needs of our students and will be an asset to our community.
I hope this information is helpful to you. I will share additional information about next steps for our school following next week’s school board meeting.
Principal, Archer Elementary
2610 Four Seasons Boulevard Greensboro, NC 27407
ELEMENTARY P 336.294.7335 F 336.294.7359