Wake County Schools

Tata shares details on proposed assignment plans

Posted May 13, 2011

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— Wake County schools Superintendent Tony Tata provided more details on Friday about two proposed student assignment plans.

Tata said the Community-Based Choice plan, also known as the “blue plan,” includes elements of the plan proposed by consultant Michael Alves. He was hired by the Wake Education Partnership and the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce to provide an alternative to a neighborhood school plan proposed by some school board members.

The Alves plan would allow parents to choose between 10 elementary, five middle and five high schools, based on proximity.

Tata said the blue plan is centered on stability, choice, proximity and student achievement. 

"If the proposal they're considering is consistent with those principals then we are pleased to see it move forward," said Tim Simmons, with the Wake Education Partnership, a group of business leaders working to better public education.

The second proposal is the Balanced Base plan, or “green plan.” Tata said it would be a shift away from the current student assignment policy and would likely focus more on student achievement than socioeconomic diversity.

Board member John Tedesco argues the Balance-Base plan is too much like what he and others are trying to push away from, but said he fully supports the choice option.

"It gives us more opportunity as a community to empower families, meet their individual needs and it also gives us more opportunity for long-term stability," he said. 

Board member Keith Sutton said both plans looked good. "Something I think everybody can live with," he said. 

Tata said his student assignment task force focused primarily on issues of proximity and student achievement in creating the plans.

“Parents, A: want to stay where there are for the most part and B: want that stability, so how do we build that into the plans? And I think the logic will hang together on these two plans,” Tata said.

Tata said the task force is still discussing things like what would happen with the more than 11,000 magnet school students under the plans.

Wake Superintendent Tony Tata Tata gives details on reassignment plans

The public will get its first chance to see and comment on the plans on May 23. In addition to the two proposed plans, the public will also be able to view the seven other plans the team considered.

Tata will take feedback from the public before making a recommendation to the school board.

The team began working on the plans in March and based them on research from 22 school districts across the country using 18 criteria.

The issue of student assignment in Wake County schools has polarized the community since a revision last year to the district's longstanding policy of busing students to help achieve socio-economic diversity.

Effective with the 2012-13 school year, the change affects the way the school system places students in schools by focusing on proximity to where they live, instead of shifting students around so that no school has more than 40 percent of students receiving free or reduced-price lunches.

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  • woodrowboyd2 May 13, 2011

    Things havent changed geosol tears are everywhere.

  • geosol May 13, 2011

    Thank you to the good people of Wake County who have recognized this failed attempt by right wing activists to destroy our public school system to try to benefit the wealthy. Smart normal folks realize that a good public school system increases property values and is the best investment in our future that we can make. Keep up the good work, folks, and fight this immoral plan and vote them out next election.

  • bmcleanshag May 13, 2011

    The plan has two proposals and the public will be able to comment on May 23. School assignments for next year went home with students today, May 13.

  • Leonardo May 13, 2011

    Fun,

    Vouchers are just going to lead to a system of haves and have-nots. Wealthier folks are going to pay extra to get into private schools. That leaves all the poor folks behind in public schools, and over and over again, that's been shown to be a recipe for failure. Show me ONE good poor inner-city school that survives without extra money to compensate. And as the public schools get worse and worse, the flight of non-poor students will get worse and worse, and inner-city schools will get poorer and poorer.

    As a non-poor person, you probably think you're okay with that arrangement. That is until these failing public schools lead to more dropouts, which leads to more crime, which leads to slums, which leads to the need for more police, which leads to higher taxes to pay for those police, etc....

    Sure, it won't happen for 20 years, but it will happen. Inner-city Raleigh is going to end up looking like inner-city Detroit.

  • Remy May 13, 2011

    Leonardo, who says the Alves plan has been approved? The story says there are "elements" of the Alves plan, but we don't know what elements have been included in Tata's plan since it has yet to be shared. Sounds like you are just using this as a lead in so you can bash Margiotta.

  • Fun May 13, 2011

    vouchers for everyone...let competition make a better system. with the voucher parents can decide where to spend the money, which public school, which charter or which private- everyone provides their own transporation. Competion will reward the better schools with more students and funding, and the teachers. Then all what would be needed is slash the school administration about 75%- they cut property taxes. or lower tax rates for those without childern by 40%, letting parents pay, and the childless can "contribute"

  • ArmyWife456 May 13, 2011

    Bottom line has already been mentioned...if you have a good dedicated student in Wake County they will remain so no matter where they go. It is not and should not be about what it has turned in to. A good education starts at home. Good teachers are everywhere, we just have to be behind them and let them do their job. I am not talking about the board, we are currently in a product of parents giving up parental responsibility to the teachers and when cuts happen and larger class sizes happen, their is just not enough time for each child to get the deserved attention...that is why it starts at HOME! If there were an easy solution, we would not ever have to discuss it. Everyone needs to take responsibility for what is going on and not blame the people doing the best they can to educate the children.

  • trianglelawns May 13, 2011

    People making comments about private/charter schools. yeah..thats the answer..let's go to vouchers like Washington, DC schools...that has worked out well for them?? Hahaha

  • RB aka Spirit Warrior Woman May 13, 2011

    I think Tata has opened a lot of avenues of communication that the school board should have had opened long ago - if they truly wanted to hear what students and parents have to say which I have always greatly doubted.

  • RB aka Spirit Warrior Woman May 13, 2011

    "Public school is a product of what we as PARENTS have made it."

    Somewhat, but it's not like the school board has been listening to the parents either.

    Primarily, as I've observed it, the school board has been operating on a lot of the private agendas of the members for years, if not decades.

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