Local News

Wake Says Lawsuit Could Have Students Out in Winter Dark

Posted April 12, 2007

— The Wake County school system Thursday held out the prospect of students leaving for school before sun-up and getting home after sunset as the possible result of a lawsuit challenging a move to impose year-round schedules for 22 schools this fall.

A group called Wake CARES has asked the court to stop to the school board’s plans to convert the 22 schools. The school system says overcrowding would result and would wreak havoc on school staff and force schools to adopt split schedules.

The group calls the schools’ statement a scare tactic.

"I would like to think, if people set down face-to-face and have a forum where everything could be aired out, then there should be some compromise, but the solution they've offered is not a fair compromise. That's intimadation. That's another threat," said Garner Mayor Ronnie Williams, a Wake CARES backer.

The lawsuit contends mandatory year-round schooling is against the state's constitution.

The school system says in its response that barring year-round would drastically disrupt its ability to plan for the future. If that extends to implementing split sessions, the district says, school would start at 7 a.m., so children could be leaving their houses as early as 6:15 every morning. Others wouldn't start until 1:30 p.m. and probably would not be back home out until after 7:30.

A judge will hear arguments in the suit April 18.


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  • why_not_me Apr 14, 2007

    I am by no means against the concept of year round schools. I am against the fact that I will have a child in year round, and one in traditional. If you're gonna make them year round, make them ALL year round... high schools included. This making 22 elementary schools and 2 middle schools year round makes no sense... what happens when the large amounts of children finish elementary school? Where are they gonna go? And then middle school? If it is gonna be done for one, do it for ALL. Then noone should have reason to complain... oh wait... I forget where I'm posting!

  • poohperson2000 Apr 14, 2007

    If you are retired and don't want to pay taxes, move to Florida. We will not miss you at all.

  • superman Apr 14, 2007

    I dont have kids. About 75% of my wake county taxes go to supporting the schools. I am also retired-- I should be exempt from paying taxes that go to the schools. You rich folks with a house full of kids can pay for yur fun.

  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc Apr 13, 2007

    I'm not against year round schools at all. In fact I kind of like the concept. What I am against is _mandatory_ year round schools for anybody. People should have a choice in the matter. I'm amazed at the folks who say "get over it" or "send them to private school" like that's those should be the only solutions. The problem with folks like that and especially the school board is that they are against choice and want to dictate who will do what. I still would like to know why it is logical to tear down and rebuild perfectly good schools and re-build them instead of building the new schools that we need and which could alleviate the need for mandatory year round schools. I don't really blame the folks posting here because they probably don't have all the facts on what has been going on around here for the last ten or more years. We've had plenty of time to plan for this better and we have failed to hold our leaders accountable. Don't buy their lies and ultimatums.

  • Rebel Apr 13, 2007

    I have a simple solution to Wake County's problem--make ALL elementary and middle schools year round! It's a more efficient use of the facilities and children lose less in their shorter breaks. It also eliminates the arguments over who gets a traditional schedule and who is on year round.

    Want a different schedule? Enroll your kids in a private school and pay for the privilege.

  • Think_About_This Apr 13, 2007

    The thought of having my 7 yr old in school at 7:30 at night is just ridiculous. Year round schools are a much better option. I support year-round schools & I am one of those parents being forced to go Y/R. This new schedule will cause A LOT of problems in my household, including having two children on two completely different schedules. Yet I still think it is a better option. If you truly can not deal with Y/R schools, then move out of Wake County and reduce the excess student population. If it's that bad, then choose another option.

    To those parents that are whining about the fact that they cannot go to the pool every day during the summer or to the beach whenever they want - GET OVER IT! We must do what it takes to prepare our children for the new world we live in and if that means they do not get the summer vacation we had as children, then so be it. Some sacrifices are worth making.

  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc Apr 13, 2007

    When I was growing up in Miami in the '70s we had split schedules in Jr. High. The 9th graders (and probably some 8th graders) had the 7am - 12pm schedule, this was the coveted one. It was great to have the entire afternoon off as a kid. Of course back then we could safely roam while our parents were still at work (yes, even in Miami). The other schedule for 7th/8th was 12pm to 5pm. I guess the school days have gotten longer since then judging by the proposed schedule. Wonder why the kids are learning as well considering the extra time? Things that make you go hmmmmm...

  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc Apr 13, 2007

    ninenine, you don't have any sympathy or tolerance for other folks problems or ideas. What's your solution?
    sounds like it's lack of choice in the public schools. "Just shut-up and do as we say". That is exactly why the schools have declined over the years. Decisions are made all too often without consideration of how it affects real people's lives or even if it is in the best interest of the children. Input from the parents is seldom seriously considered. And there is no competition. A recipe for disaster. It's now reaching the boiling point and I don't blame the parents for being at arms about it. If the school board had been using the tax dollars more wisely over the last ten years or so, we wouldn't be in this jam, in my opinion. I have seen many perfectly good schools completely torn down and rebuilt over the last ten years in Wake County. How many new schools could we have built with those dollars?

  • thewayitis Apr 13, 2007

    In America, you are required by law to educate your children. Period. You cannot choose whether or not to give your kids an education. However, it is foolish to assume one type of school schedule can accomodate all of the people in Wake County. Given that it's REQUIRED to educate our children, there have to be different schedules to actually allow families to fulfill this requirement -- even people required to perform community service have a choice about how to fulfill their obligations -- don't our honest, law-abiding families deserve the same consideration? Let's stop arguing, and figure out some schedules that will allow all to fulfill their legal schooling obligation, be that year-round, traditional, or alternative. Let's make it easy for people to obey the law.

  • CherryDarling Apr 13, 2007

    Easy to judge when you are not faced with year round conversions as a problem.

    I have a friend who has her daughters on different tracks in year round schools. Now they never have the same days off and she is faced with before school and after school nightmares for her youngest because her daughters are on completely different schedules.

    And if putting our kids in private school is the solution, are you going to make a contribution towards the cost of tuition?