Before you guess, remember we're talking about a town of only around 8,000 residents and 7.7 square miles in size. If you guessed six, you're right.
They are Allen ISD, Lovejoy ISD, McKinney ISD, Plano ISD, Princeton ISD, and Wylie ISD. Wylie ISD runs through a development called Seis Lagos which is within the Lucas ETJ, or extraterritorial jurisdiction.
Why are the School District Lines So Random?
Historically, school district lines follow natural boundaries like creeks, lakes, and roads, but when they start taking off across open land in rural areas it can create problems. It's not an issue until development starts moving in because those lines can cut right through the middle of a subdivision or even a home within a subdivision.
Thompson Springs and Seis Lagos are two developments that come to mind. Most of Thompson Springs is in Lovejoy ISD but some of it is in McKinney ISD. Some of Seis Lagos is in Lovejoy ISD and some is in Wylie ISD.
Are School District Lines Really a Big Deal?
They really are. How'd you like to live in a home where all of your kids friends were right there around you in your neighborhood but your child goes to a different school and school district? And how would you like to drive right by a school located in your neighborhood to take your child to a school miles away. If kids are riding the bus, the differences might be a 10 minute ride vs a one hour ride every day.
I'll share a true story from about 15 years ago. I received a call from a land owner in Lucas who told me they wanted to sell their property. I knew they hadn't owned the land for very long so I asked why they were selling so quickly.
The owner told me they had their home completely designed and all Lucas city approvals had been procured. The builder was supposed to start the dirt work the next day when they received a call from the superintendent of the Lovejoy school district. He informed them that their home was not in Lovejoy ISD, but actually in McKinney ISD.
On this particular property you could literally stand with one foot in McKinney ISD and the other in Lovejoy ISD. The owners decided they wanted to be in Lovejoy ISD, so they sold the property and it was really a beautiful tract of land. But that's how strongly some feel about school districts.
Why Not Just Move the School District Lines?
It's all about money. School districts have no incentive to realign their lines and forego the high property taxes they receive from these these expensive homes and land.
I've spent twenty years following this story. I know developers have taken the argument of moving the school district lines all the way to the Texas Education Agency in Austin but nothing was ever accomplished.
If one developer was allowed to move the district lines to benefit their development, every other developer would try the same thing. Then, lawsuits would start flying if they were denied. Talk about opening a can of worms.
I don't believe these school district property lines will be realigned, but if an out of district homeowner wants to buy in to Lovejoy ISD, they can for a maximum of $12K per school year. Every year over one hundred families do just that.