Interim Superintendent Randall Collins said he has asked the state for an extension until November of the deadline to present a plan to address racial imbalance in Groton.
Collins said he spoke to Laura Anastasio, the lawyer who handles racial imbalance cases for the state department of education.
The state cited Groton for racial imbalance at Catherine Kolnaski Magnet School in the winter of 2010, but recently notified the district it has pending imbalances at five other schools.
Collins said the state wants to meet with him and Facilities Director Wes Greenleaf to find out what progress Groton has made before granting the request.
The school department hired the Branford consulting firm Milone & MacBroom last spring and see if they meet the state requirements.
The school board and town council are expected to receive a proposed redistricting plan during a joint meeting on Sept. 17. Greenleaf said the plan has these goals:
- Balance student populations at the schools
- Address state requirements for racial balance and create socio-economic balance among schools
- Keep neighborhoods together to the extent possible
- Reduce travel costs
- Create a redistricting plan that lasts at least five years.
The imbalance at Catherine Kolnaski has been a struggle for years. The school was cited for racial imbalance in 2003, and its numbers have bounced up and down since, but have been worse in recent years.
In 2009, the school's minority population exceeded the district average by 25.7 percent. That figured then increased to 27.4 percent.
A school is considered racially imbalanced if the minority population is greater than 25 percentage points above the district average.