Editor's note: This article has been updated to clarify the position of a parent who threatened legal action against the school district.
Plans to change the high school boundaries in the Seattle Public Schools are causing an uproar with students and their families. Some parents say they're prepared to take legal action against the district if necessary.
"Several months ago someone said did you hear that your son and the rest of them might have to leave Ballard? I said, what are you talking about?" said Margaret Cerrato-Blue, a parent from the Magnolia neighborhood whose son is a sophomore at Ballard.
Cerrato-Blue, along with a group of neighborhood parents, cites a number of concerns about one proposal that would uproot their kids in their junior or senior year.
In the fall of 2019, Lincoln high school in Wallingford reopens. Eventually, it will serve 1,600 students, and the district must decide where those students will come from.
For kids like 15-year-old Isabella Terrones, a Ballard sophomore, it could mean a big disruption during their formative years.
"She's on the varsity golf team. She's committed to the lacrosse team. She has the Pathways program," her mother, Kim Terrones said.
Another Magnolia parent, Lynn Anderson, is worried her daughter would have to change schools in a crucial year.
"She'll be a junior, and I know in terms of college how important that junior year is," said Anderson. "It's the big year for testing and getting ready to put all your applications in and not wanting to disrupt that flow.
Transportation is also a big concern for parents from several neighborhoods.
"From Magnolia to Lincoln, one hour seven minutes on average," said James Wagar, a parent of a 14-year-old at Ballard.
Even more worrisome, a commute to Lincoln High School from Magnolia could mean a bus transfer at 3rd and Pine, a troubled intersection known for its crime.
"The thought that would be her bus stop, her transfer point, was terrifying," said Anderson.
As the school board near its final decision on new boundaries, Cerrato-Blue, who is also an attorney, claims they have yet to receive any formal notification from the district - a violation, she believes, of due process.
She said she was prepared to take legal action over the 'grandfathering rules,' which she feared could force her son to leave Ballard High School in his senior year.
In a comment to MyBallard.com, Cerrato-Blue wrote "...no student at BHS from any affected neighborhood should be forced to leave their teachers, coaches, sports teams, academic pathways and more, during a very crucial time in their lives."
"If we have to go to court, you will stay at Ballard because it's the legal and right thing for them to do," she said.
A Seattle Public Schools spokesperson insisted it has been engaging with parents through a series of five community meetings and several emails.
On Friday, the district's task force will meet to discuss the feedback they've gotten from all of the communities impacted by this process.
The school board is expected to decide on the new boundaries by the end of the month.