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Planning the HCPSS School Attendance Areas

The Office of School Planning is responsible for projecting student enrollment, planning for infrastructure needs, developing school boundary studies and studying attendance area adjustments, and writing the school system’s annual feasibility study.

Attendance Area Adjustments, Effective 2020-2021 School Year

The Howard County Board of Education on November 21, 2019, voted to revise Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) school attendance areas for the 2020–2021 school year. The decision to adjust school boundaries was prompted by the need to relieve crowded schools, more effectively balance capacity utilization among schools throughout the district, and address inequities in the distribution of students affected by poverty.

The decision culminated a months-long process that included extensive planning, evaluation and data verification; feedback provided by thousands of stakeholders through community meetings, surveys and seven public hearings; and extensive consideration among Board members during nine public work sessions.

Enrollment Projections

Every year, the Office of School Planning produces an enrollment projection, compiling updated data including projected housing, construction, historical and projected births, housing resales and student population characteristics.

Learn more about the Enrollment Projection Methodology →

The Projection Accuracy Report is presented to the Board annually in the beginning of each calendar year.

Feasibility Study

The Feasibility Study:

  • Provides a comprehensive review of school boundary options, focused on capacity utilization targets as defined by Policy 6010
  • Presents student enrollment projections and trends, and
  • Develops capital improvement plan strategies

2021 Feasibility Study (Presented to the Board of Education June 10, 2021 / 73 pages / 2.45 MB)

Previous Feasibility Studies: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014

Measuring Program Capacity

Utilizing our facilities to their fullest.

As defined by Policy 6010 – School Attendance Areas, Program Capacity is the number of students that can be reasonably accommodated in a school, based on the permanent school facility (relocatables are excluded) and the educational program offered.

Capacities can change over time based on system wide review/recalculation of capacities or individual school reviews due to specific needs (additions, renovations, or movement of regional programs). Some rooms are excluded from capacity calculations including Prekindergarten and Regional Special Education rooms.

Details are included in the most recent capacity studies.

Current School Assignments

School Locator

Use our online map application to locate your address within the county, find your planning polygon number, and view adopted attendance areas.

Capital Planning

The annual Capital Budget development and review process is supported by both county and state funding.

The school system considers construction projects carefully as each project goes through a myriad of stages from concept to completion. Parents and community members may follow each of our major construction projects as they move through the stages of the process.

View currently active and recently completed construction projects →

Students entering Bushey Park Elementary School

Contact Us

Office of School Planning
10910 Clarksville Pike
Ellicott City, MD 21042
410-313-1554; 410-313-6890 (F)