Wake County Schools

Wake County parents voice concerns over assignment plan

Posted February 2, 2012
Updated February 3, 2012

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— Dozens of parents concerned over where Wake County's choice student assignment plan will take their children gathered at Martin Street Baptist Church in Raleigh on Thursday evening. 

Most in the crowd preferred the board's previous model that assigned students in part to balance diversity. 

"No research shows choice plans are better than the ones you had," state NAACP president Rev. William Barber said.

Barber has been one of the most vocal critics of the board policy change to stop busing students for socio-economic diversity.

The new choice plan gives parents options with a focus on neighborhood schools. Some worry that means poor, minority neighborhoods will have poor, minority heavy schools.

"It will re segregate," Great Schools in Wake Coalition member Amy Lee said.

Wake County schools Superintendent Tony Tata, who helped build the plan, listened to the concerns.

"We are not seeing the dramatic shift in the demographic makeup of the schools," Tata said following the meeting. 

Tata said magnet schools will create balance in the plan. Drawing kids from around the county to schools in need.

"We are re-enforcing the magnet program," he said. 

Detractors say the magnet program is not large enough to balance the county alone.

The biggest concern among those Thursday was that district leaders are not sure what effect their plan will have.

"Don't tell us it is going to be better and let it play out," Barber said. Education Concerns remain over Wake assignment plan

More than 12,700 children are already signed up for the new plan. Tata said they are watching parents' selections closely and as issues arise, they are addressed.

"Once we get this first round of choice under our belts, we are going to have excellent data," Tata said. 

Tata said he could have answered all the questions people had on Thursday, but he was not asked to. 

Officials said they want to submit their concerns for answers in writing. The NAACP, one of the organizers of Thursday night's gathering, has a pending federal complaint against the school system involving the plan.

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  • randall0123a Feb 6, 2012

    “The new choice plan gives parents options with a focus on neighborhood schools. Some worry that means poor, minority neighborhoods will have poor, minority heavy schools. It will re segregate, Great Schools in Wake Coalition member Amy Lee said.”
    Amy Lee, this is comical. A community school is just a school of the surrounding community. So, if the community school is segregated or a majority of a minority, then guess what, that means the community is that way. Blaming the school is the biggest attempt at distraction and farce that I have ever seen. So, for fashion shows have too many fit people in them, I assume you will fight to have obese people bussed in to upcoming shows? Stop spinning this into something it isn’t, or shouldn’t be. Now, if we all want to come together and make sure ALL public schools receive the same public funding, then this is a MUST. Anything else is biased and assisting special treatment and IN-equality.

  • Remy Feb 3, 2012

    "Yeah, and I wanted YR for years. Tried 5 tears and a row. Finally gave up. You WANTED YR and now you don't. Too bad."
    beaupeep

    Don't know if you got up on the wrong side of the bed or what, but my comment was about a neighbor, and did not require another rude comment from you. My comment fits right into the story line and is a prime example of what citizens may be facing soon.

  • beaupeep Feb 3, 2012

    Superman: Makes you crazy that 99.99% of the people are happy and this is going well, doesn't it?

    Tell us again about the HS site.

  • superman Feb 3, 2012

    Well the "fat lady hasnt sung yet". Just because you have chosen your selection doesnt mean anything. How many children made their Christmas list and are still waiting for what they asked for? It is no more than musical chairs Wake County School version. The chairs available are the same but different students may be sitting in some of the chairs. I do not think the board has plans to close schools that are under utilized. There were unhappy parents with the old plan and they going to be just as many unhappy with the new plan. The board just wants to please parents without any regard to education. Perhaps in the future we can elect a board that will focus on making the schools better and focus less on public relations and making parents happy. The new supt is a good talker, smiles nicely and is terrific at public relations but he just dont know "nothing" about schools and education. He is and was a mistake.

  • beaupeep Feb 3, 2012

    "My neighbor's children are in YR ES, and now want trad sced for middle school. However our trad choice is already full. How can the board say this is going to work when our trad choice is not available? I guess the neighbor is now going to forced YR instead of trad option."

    Yeah, and I wanted YR for years. Tried 5 tears and a row. Finally gave up. You WANTED YR and now you don't. Too bad.

  • coolchief Feb 3, 2012

    So the residents of these neigborhoods don't want their children attending schools in their neigborhood but they want to make mine go there? It would be worth the investment to sell the property of these schools no one wants to attend and buy more desirable land in other areas. The savings on attorneys, comittees, studies, and fuel it takes to have buses passing each other swapping kids from one neighborhood to another neighborhood. But then what would the Rev do?

  • citizensoldier16 Feb 3, 2012

    Dozens of parents complaining? Where is the reporting on the hundreds of thousands of parents who AGREE with the new plan? Come on WRAL, stop the spin and report both sides.

  • 7birdman Feb 3, 2012

    A few dozen stuck in the 1960's vs 12,700, moving forward to a good education. Barber just has the same old falled ideas from 50 years ago.

  • Lamborghini Mercy Feb 3, 2012

    sheldavemiller - The one thing that gets me is why won't minority children (except Asians & Indians) won't do their FAIR SHARE of LEARNING

    Perhaps you forgot the minority (except asians and Indians) deal with racism. While your busy pointing that Asian across the street is 10x times smarter than you along with the majority. Explain that?

  • sheldavemiller Feb 3, 2012

    It's not parents, It's just the NAACP and their usual rabble rousers doing the good lord president obama's divisive work as usual. The one thing that gets me is why won't minority children (except Asians & Indians) won't do their FAIR SHARE of LEARNING? Why? Is it the same reason their parents are incapable of obtaining any legal identification (that they could use to vote with) outside of a EBT Card?

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