Security costs for Wake school board meetings increasing

Posted July 20, 2010

— Spending on security for Wake County Board of Education meetings has skyrocketed in the past eight months, according school system data obtained by the Wake Community Network.

The conservative group issued a news release Tuesday showing numbers given to them by Wake County School Public School System school system spokesman Michael Evans.

The data shows that between July and November of last year, the school system spent $451.58 on security at school board meetings.

Between December 2009, when the new school board majority was seated, and April of this year, the system spent $14,719.39 to hire private security officers and off-duty police officers for school board meetings.

In November, four newly elected members created the 5-4 majority on the school board working to change the decade-old policy that assigns students, in part, to achieve socio-economic diversity at schools.

The debate over the board majority's community-based assignment policy has drawn sometimes loud criticism at crowded meetings. On June 15, four people, including state NAACP President Rev. William Barber, were arrested on second-degree trespassing charges during what they termed a "non-violent protest."

Opponents of the change say moving away from the policy of busing students will segregate schools and create pockets of poverty.

Supporters of the school board's community-based assignment model favor placing students in schools closer to where they live, saying it would give parents more choices and allow more parents to be involved in their children's education.

The school system currently bases student assignment on the number of students in a school who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches, which are federally subsidized and depend on family income. The goal is to keep that percentage below 40 percent.


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  • rixida Jul 21, 2010

    The "reverend" is not being very reverent. And hes also being a pain in the ---.

  • mrbigt032j Jul 21, 2010


  • ncguy Jul 21, 2010

    Back charge the NAACP

  • cubed32696 Jul 21, 2010

    Hmmm....I am puzzled. Somebody please explain why the school board can not simply request a greater law enforcement presence, e.g. State Trooper, City, County...? Why do they have to "hire security"? WXYZ

    The added security IS Raleigh PD. Because the BOE needs additional man power, they must pay for it. Some of the LEO would be off duty, instead they are called in to serve as baby sitters for Barbor and his cronies.

  • cubed32696 Jul 21, 2010

    I don't recall those of us who did not support year-round scheduling creating a scene. We just sucked it up and went on. Too bad others cannot do the same. Those elected last year are doing exactly what they said they were going to do. Finally politicans that not only talk the talk, but walk the walk.
    I also realize that "everyone" did not get to vote last year. If you were able to vote last year and you did not, then boo hoo to you. The 39% of us who did got exactly what we wanted -- a BOE that listened to the other side for a change.
    I believe that most who were arrested yesterday are not even from Raleigh, let them pick up the tab.

  • Valkyrie Jul 21, 2010

    Anything for camera time.

    The security guards wouldn't be needed if it weren't for barber's need to be seen.

    I agree with fearna, be a part of the solution, not the problem. barber and his groupies are COSTING us, the taxpayers, as well as preventing those WE ELECTED from being able to do their job in an efficient and timely fashion.

  • Tax Man Jul 21, 2010

    The protesters who illegally disrupted lawful meetings should be put on probation and a condition of probation should be to reimburse the WCPSS for all of its added security costs! Those who were arrested a second time should be charged with felonies - conspiracy, criminal trespass, etc. and given very large fines/prison/if probation they should pay restitution for security costs and rescheduling meetings. What makes these criminals think they are above the law???? If they are not Wake County residents they have NO business even being on WCPSS property - they have no standing - they should be severely punished for their crimes and for the disruption and costs involved. We do not need outsiders stirring up trouble in our County. We elected this board, we support this board, we want the trespasser jailed, fined and severely punished!

  • Tawny Jul 21, 2010

    During the 60's civil rights era, many of those arrested were not local citizens. This current situation is similar to those times.

  • fearna Jul 21, 2010

    To Frosty - they weren't present at the school board elections because they are not residents of Wake County. Not that their 5 votes would have made any difference - the residents of Wake County have taken a democratic vote, and therefore the people have spoken. Regardless of ones opinion, it is what we have to work with because that is what we as a people asked for.

  • fearna Jul 21, 2010

    It was interesting to me that the majority of the people arrested don't even live in Wake County - there was representation from Durham, Chapel Hill, Winston-Salem, Greensboro and several other communities. How about you stay home and let Wake County worry about Wake County. Secondly, with the money this fight has cost Wake County through legal bills, security, increased access to meetings, we could have funded several educational programs. Rev. Barber - you are taking away from our children. Be a part of the solution, not the problem.