Education

Parents weigh in on year-round schools in Wake County

Posted February 9, 2010
Updated February 10, 2010

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— The Wake County Board of Education on Tuesday held its first of five community meetings on school calendar options.

The board sought parents' input at Holly Springs High, 5329 Cass Holt Road in Holly Springs, as it considers changes to student assignment.

"I want to say that we strongly support the multi-track year-round calendar,” parent Christa Riker-Sheets said.

Riker-Sheets is among the parents who want to keep student assignments as they are.

The school board recently surveyed parents about their attitudes toward the year-round calendar, which can accommodate more students than schools on a traditional calendar.

About 28 percent of parents in the district responded to the survey and when asked how satisfied they were with their child's current calendar, 83 percent of parents indicated that they were pleased – about 58 percent were "very satisfied" and nearly 25 percent were "satisfied."

However, some parents at Tuesday's meeting were not happy about the preliminary survey results.

"From the 2009-2010 calendar survey, do not let them tell you everything is perfect,” parent Warren Williams said.

Parents voice concerns over Wake student assignment Parents voice concerns over student assignment

Parent Liz Parry, who was among the less than 20 people who took to the podium, told the board that enough is enough.

"I think the subject of year-round has been talked to death in this community,” she said.

Board of Education Chairman Ron Margiotta said he expects to hear more debate in upcoming public forums, especially from parents at three year-round schools – Leesville Middle, Salem Middle and Wakefield Elementary.

Survey results from those schools had parents indicating they do not prefer year-round schools. Margiotta said he thinks changing student assignments is possible for those who want it.

"For the parts of the county that responded in a way that they are looking for change in calendar, there is wiggle room in that area,” Margiotta said.

Parents at other year-round schools were mostly in favor of the calendar, according to the survey.

Talk also turned Tuesday to the decade-old diversity policy, which buses students across school districts to help achieve socio-economic diversity.

"It's not working, it is a social-engineering program,” parent Art Wilson said.

Parent Nathaniel Wood could not disagree more.

"You are also going to return back to segregation,” he said.

The school system's diversity policy will be discussed Wednesday morning during a policy community meeting.

Upcoming public meetings on year-round schools are:

  • Thursday, Feb. 11 at Southeast Raleigh High, 2600 Rock Quarry Road, Raleigh
  • Thursday, Feb. 18 at Heritage High School, 1150 Forestville Road, Wake Forest
  • Tuesday, Feb. 23 at Leesville Road High School, 8409 Leesville Road, Raleigh
  • Thursday, Feb. 25 at Panther Creek High School, 6770 McCrimmon Parkway, Cary

Each meeting runs from 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. in the schools' auditoriums.

29 Comments

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  • Remy Feb 11, 2010

    time4real- you only know what you are being told...how can you know what is going on when the board itself does not what is going on? Until changes are voted on, there is no guarantee. Don't put all your eggs in one basket. There are 9 baskets and if anyone changes sides (like we have already seen with Goldman), your basket will not matter because majority rules with this board.

  • SS67 Feb 10, 2010

    In the 90's, Wake County fired the statistician that told them they were in for alot of growth and needed to plan for it. When it was proposed to make developers account for this growth with schools and road improvement, Wake County said "no, that would stifle growth".
    The Year-Around schools did what they were supposed to do: create space. My kid's school didn't have enough kids to fill all tracks for all grade levels. that's good. that means there is room for growth.
    If you want "traditional" calendar, pick track 1. Summers off meant working in the fields, not spending money at the beach.
    In this day and age, why is bussing used to create "equal" schools? There should be mechanisms in place that would funnel support and money and resources into schools where the parents in the neighborhood can't make all the PTA meetings because they have to catch the bus to their next job.

  • ERRN Feb 10, 2010

    "Year-Round"?? Are the schools circular shaped? Or are they "year-Around??"

  • injameswetrust2003 Feb 10, 2010

    "Folks say "social engineering" like it's a bad thing. Why shouldn't we make an attempt to have a more inclusive society? Are we doomed to make the same mistakes over and over?"

    Great idea. Why don't we ASSIGN people to houses instead of letting those who work hard to live in nice neighborhoods.

    This country is a democracy, not a socialist state.

  • injameswetrust2003 Feb 10, 2010

    "You are also going to return back to segregation,” Nathaniel Wood.

    This argument is so weak. Does this mean that Wake Co. is already segregated by neighborhood, because if we have neighborhood schools that makes sense.

    According to WRAL's partner in crime, the News and Disturber, the county is already diverse.

    Fact: The Failed Forced Busing - Socialist Policy must end with the school board members that were voted out or quit. Mayor Meeker's wife should not be on the school board. This is a conflict of interest.

  • time4real Feb 10, 2010

    "taking a beating" hardly.
    i know exactly what's going on and i'm good to go brother, but thanks for your worry.

  • Garnerwolf1 Feb 10, 2010

    Appears some are re-writing their own history

  • Blues Man Z Feb 10, 2010

    time4real is taking a beating today, this is the same bozo who claimed last week that he already had a list of schools that were changing their calendars.

  • ambidextrous cat Feb 10, 2010

    "About 28 percent of (upper middle class) parents in the district responded to the survey and when asked how satisfied they were with their child's current calendar."

    This does not reveal much useful information.

  • rich son Feb 10, 2010

    wantingmore4us.....to make matters worse, when officials realized the need for more schools everybody cried broke! How, when everything but the kitchen sink is taxed? My opinion,this YR vs traditional fiasco is a result of negligence and poor planning from the people in charge. It's nothing but a smoke screen that hides they're lack of leadership.

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