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Chatham schools hear from parents on grade-shifting plan

Posted February 15, 2011

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— Wake County schools aren't the only district shuffling students around as a cost-saving measure.

Hundreds of parents attended a meeting Tuesday night about a Chatham County schools plan that would break up schools that had a kindergarten through 8th grade configuration. It's a tough sell for some parents, whose families have attended the same school for generations.

About 940 of the district’s 7,800 students would be reassigned, school officials said last month.

Nine of the affected schools would become K-5. Four schools would convert to grades 6 through 8.

In January, Superintendent Robert Logan said that K-8 schools cost more to run because the state provides funding based on the number of students enrolled.

School officials said the plan could save the district about $1 million. The school system is facing a projected $4.5 million budget shortfall for the 2011-12 school year.

Tuesday's meeting was the first of three public hearings being held to consider parents' input before moving forward with the plan.

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  • hellorhighwaters Feb 16, 2011

    Student safety also should be one of their main topics. Having a school with K-5 is much better than say K-8.
    In a school of K-8, the little ones in K-3 are over whamed with the bigger kids. And some are a little fightened. Plus grades 7 and 8, these kids are maturing very fast into teenagers. They do not need to be in the same school with these little ones in K-3.
    So, looking at it from that aspect, K-5 seems to be a very good move.

  • froggygirl Feb 16, 2011

    Change comes slowly to Chatham County, and many people aren't familiar with middle schools. Therefore, they don't want them--it's not how they grew up. This is what people tell me.

  • 27228 Feb 16, 2011

    The only people copying the issues that are going on in Raleigh are folks who are opposed to the redistricting.

  • 27228 Feb 16, 2011

    I'm not sure, but I think the cost savings are realized when you take into account duplication of services and streamlined procedures (so that the county doesn't have to have separate plans for its K-4, K-5, and K-8 schools).

  • wildcat Feb 16, 2011

    they said THAT was to save money.
    thefensk

    You are right. But what they are really doing is copying the issues that are going on in Raleigh. Chatham schools is OK and don't need fixing. Leave things alone.

  • GoGreen Feb 16, 2011

    RB, whatelse, you are correct. Bad reporting.

  • RB-1 Feb 16, 2011

    "In January, Superintendent Robert Logan said that K-8 schools cost more to run because the state provides funding based on the number of students enrolled."

    ???

    Wouldn't it still be the same number of students enrolled? Where would the extra students come from? Cloning?

  • whatelseisnew Feb 16, 2011

    "In January, Superintendent Robert Logan said that K-8 schools cost more to run because the state provides funding based on the number of students enrolled."

    I don't follow this logic. The State provides a per pupil amount of money. Does he amount vary depending on grade level? Even so, no matter how you divide the total number of students, it is the same number of students, so the amount of money should be the same.

  • thefensk Feb 16, 2011

    What's funny is that when they first sold us on the K-8 plan in the 1990s when my daughter attended North Chatham, they said THAT was to save money.