Wake County Schools

'Controlled choice' plan for Wake schools expected Friday

Posted February 8, 2011

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— Two local nonprofit groups are expected to say this week how they think students in Wake County should be assigned to schools.

The Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce and the Wake Education Partnership say they will release a plan at a news conference set for 10 a.m. Friday at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Cary. (Watch the news conference live on WRAL.com.)

In response to a controversial policy approved last February by the Wake County Board of Education, the two groups hired Boston-based consultant Michael Alves to craft a plan that would give Wake County families options about where their children should go to school while focusing on the academic achievement mix of students attending each school.

Although the groups haven’t said what the plan entails, Alves is known for his work on what he calls a “controlled choice” method for student assignment.

The plan, he has said, divides a school system into zones based on a computer model that distributes the student population so that each area is representative of the entire school system.

Alves has said that the goal is both to give parents choices about their child's education and to improve "under-chosen" schools.

The school board’s move last year to do away with a decade-old practice of busing students to help keep schools diverse sparked an outcry from many fearful that implementing a neighborhood-based assignment policy will segregate schools and keep economically disadvantaged students from receiving the same quality of education as their counterparts.

Under the old policy, which is in place until the end of the 2012-13 school year, students are bused across district lines so that no schools have a student population of more than 40 percent receiving free or reduced lunch.

How the new policy will be implemented is still unclear.

In October, the board voted 5-3 to start over with how to do so after concerns that parents and other board members weren’t being given enough input.


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  • Peace Love and Cold Meds Feb 11, 2011

    This Chamber of Comm play plan, says you get TEN choices for ES. Are you kidding me?

  • Peace Love and Cold Meds Feb 11, 2011

    "The boards so called plan has already resulted in the loss of a 30 million federal grant. They wasted another 3 million when they changed the location of a new high school."

    And how many millions are being wasted on year round schools that aren't living up to the savings we were mislead into believing we'd see?

  • superman Feb 11, 2011

    The boards so called plan has already resulted in the loss of a 30 million federal grant. They wasted another 3 million when they changed the location of a new high school. The board and their antics is costing the schools money, jobs and programs. Be careful what you ask for--you may get it and find that you cant afford it. That means another 33 million of local tax money to make up the deficit.

  • carnival glass Feb 11, 2011

    More outsiders trying to push their propaganda. If I had realized what a mess this school system is, we would have moved to Johnston or Harnett 10 years ago. Why is it only Wake County has to bus students all around? There are 99 other counties who assign based on location. Are they all wrong or racist for using common sense? The 'old' board was out of control with their reassignments, 'wacky' Wednesdays, and complete refusal to listen to the parents. That is why they got voted out. If you didn't vote. Stop whining.

  • Peace Love and Cold Meds Feb 11, 2011

    Today's waste of time discussing a "zone plan" something Debra Goldman said she doesn't support unless base assignments are included, is brought to you by the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce and the Wake Education Partnership.

    Both groups are only out to protect their investments and could care less about your child's education.

  • Shamrock Feb 11, 2011

    mrcrosby- when you put a statement out here, it is out for every to comment about. If you don't like to see responses, then don't post.

  • federalsales Feb 11, 2011


  • Peace Love and Cold Meds Feb 11, 2011

    "This plan appears to be a zone overlay on top of the old 'diversity' plan."

    Right on the money. The owner of wral and his buddies will love it, but those who voted for change and support ending the D policy will not. More importantly, it means nothing. The school board/system didn't hire this guy, the business mongers did. Therefore, they won't be implementing the Alves Plan in Wake Co.

  • mrcrosbys Feb 11, 2011

    "They need to concentrate on whatever it is they do" mrcrosby

    This is what they do.

    That's nice, and I can tell them to mind their own business, that's what I do. So mind your own business

  • Ready2Taxi Feb 11, 2011

    Today's oxymorom: "controlled choice".