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Garner Considers Suing School District Over Busing

Posted January 3, 2007

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— Town officials planned to meet with attorneys Wednesday to discuss a possible lawsuit against the Wake County school system over its busing practices.

To diversify enrollments at its schools, the district buses thousands of students to schools outside their neighborhoods based on socioeconomic factors such as qualification for free or reduced-price lunches.

Garner Mayor Ronnie Williams said he thinks too many local students are being bused out of town while too many students from elsewhere in the county are being bused into Garner.

"I'm a proponent of busing to achieve diversity," Williams said. "(But) our new focus for these opted-out (local) students is to get them back to Garner schools."

Lower-income students have performed better on state tests because of the busing policy, district officials have said.

Williams and members of a group called Greater Garner are discussing a lawsuit with Charlotte attorneys who represented a group of parents in 1999 in a suit that ended a 30-year court-ordered desegregation policy in Wake County Schools.

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  • Not_So_Dumb Jan 4, 2007

    Exactly how much money is spent on maintenance/gas/drivers? How about the amount of time a child pends away from home due to greater distances from school? How much do parents spend on gas and maintenance to prevent their children from riding buses, which the American Acad. of Pediatrics and Emergency Physicians have stated to be unsafe and requiring much improving?
    Who is more important? children or BOE members? I was actually told that this is a fact of life in Wake and that we just have to accept it(by a BOE member). When, in a democracy, does a group of people just accept something that is not working, something that is wrong? Why should we accept putting our children at risk?
    Way to go Garner! I say it should go as far as to include all Citizens of Wake County, not just one town!!

  • DOG Jan 3, 2007


  • mom2threecld Jan 3, 2007

    Anything that would make sense, wake county public school would do the opposite. no other county waits until 6am when buses are already en route to cancel school due to ice. my daughter is out of district, her senior year, and her sophmore year had a 4.5 gpa and they refused to let her have a transfer that year. she's always been out of district mind you, i had to change residence to keep her there. then junior and senior year allowed her to stay as a transfer. Ramey beavers is one of the ones behind all this and he is rude and hateful. good luck. hope garner wins

  • Humble Opinion Jan 3, 2007

    Student achievement isn't solely based on the amount of money spent per child per school. What policies like NCLB fail to work into the equation is the impact of the socio-economic level of the families. No matter how much schools do to try to level the playing field, students who have highly educated parents who have read to them from birth (and sometimes earlier!) will be at an advantage over students who have illiterate parents. Home climate has so much to do with a child's success in the academic world. Giving every school the same amount of money and sending them to their community schools doesn't result in a better situation - it merely places "rich kids" together at one school (which will typically result in more PTA funding, more parent volunteers, etc) and "poor kids" at another (with the opposite effect). I think Wake County's got the right idea. Their busing situation is nothing like Charlotte-Meck's was in the '90s.

  • LibertarianTechie Jan 3, 2007

    The reason Wake County School System buses students is so that the students get far enough away from home as to prevent parents from wanting to go to attend school activities. Then, the child will want to depend on the teachers for sympathy, help, etc. instead of there parents, thus introducing dependence on government from the beginning of the child's life. Then, later in life, the child will depend on government versus family to get through rough patches. Its all one great big plan to increase dependence on government to bring us closer to Europe.

  • revmic7 Jan 3, 2007

    I work for the state in the shool system and I have to agree that if the state would spend equal moneys to each school and on each child things would be alot smoother. The children need to stay in their community. As staff mebers we would be more likely to be able to get to know them and some of their background and in turn would be able to better address the challeges that the child may have. There may even be a savings on fuel and that could be redirected to a better use.

  • spiritwarriorwoman Jan 3, 2007

    I agree wholeheartedly with "seriley1737." If all of the school tax dollars were put into a huge state pot and meted out equally at a price per student per school, education would be available equally regardless of what the tax base in the location of the schools is.
    Moving children out of their localities into mega-schools is the reason why there is so much apathy, strife and crime in the schools. (There are just too many students for the teachers to control.) Plus, if you went to a school nearer your home, you might be more apt to behave, knowing your parents aren't far away to knock your head if you didn't, and parents might be more able to attend school functions for their children. As it is now, parents often work outside of the home and have several children being bused to several schools making it difficult for them to attend all the functions and sports activities for their children.
    Let's get back to true communities and true families. AMEN!!!
    God bless.
    Rev. RB

  • ltbarkley Jan 3, 2007

    They spend the same amount of money on roads in every county in NC, why does this same policy not apply to schools? That seems backwards to me. Obviously, Wake County should receive more money for roads than Watauga County. Every school should get the same money, allow the students to go to the school closest to them!

  • wakeresident Jan 3, 2007

    That's what I can't understand - if you spend the same $ amount for each student, it shouldn't matter which school they go to, or whether they qualify for free lunch.

  • Forgetaboutit Jan 3, 2007

    Stop this busing now. Let everyone live and go to school where they live. Start spending the same dollar amount on each student. Let each student have the same amount of resources.