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Apex parents, students attend reassignment meeting

Posted January 5, 2009

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— Parents and students affected by reassignment rallied outside Apex High School, before gathering inside for a public hearing Monday evening on the Wake school district's revised student-reassignment proposal.

Families in Churchill Downs, MacGregor Downs, Royal Ridge and Woods of Kildaire say they will be affected by reassignment. Although some students reside within five miles of Apex High and Cary High, the reassignment plan has them attending Athens Drive High in Raleigh.

The hearing is the first of five to be held in coming days. The official hearing begins at 6:30 p.m. in the school auditorium at 1501 Laura Duncan Road. The next public hearings will be:

  • Jan. 8 at Southeast Raleigh High School, 2600 Rock Quarry Road, Raleigh
  • Jan. 12 at Millbrook High School, 2201 Spring Forest Road, Raleigh
  • Jan. 14 at Fuquay-Varina High School, 201 Bengal Blvd., Fuquay-Varina
  • Jan. 15 at East Wake High School, 5101 Rolesville Road, Wendell

The district has more information about speaking at the public hearings.

The Wake County Board of Education will finalize the reassignment plan by Feb. 3. Mailings will then be sent to the parents of affected students, who will know their final assignments by mid-May.

Under the latest plan, about 9,800 students will be reassigned next year, another 11,008 the following year and 4,677 in the 2011-2012 school year. The original plan would have moved nearly 1,000 more.

Ed Green, who is raising his three daughters in Cary's MacGregor Downs, was among the parents unhappy with the revised proposal.

“This neighborhood has been assigned to Apex High for at least 30 years,” Green said.

Instead of Apex, about 80 students may now go to Athens Drive High.

“Why they're going to take these two nodes (areas) out of the middle of Cary and Apex and send them inside the Beltline just doesn't make any sense,” Green said.

Green said there is also a chance that current Apex High students could be grandfathered in. So Katherine, who is a freshman, would stay. However, Melissa, an eighth-grader, would start her freshman year at Athens Drive.

“We can't have kids going to two different high schools. I mean, what football games would we go to on Friday night? It is just going to be crazy,” Green said.

“I certainly understand these folks' concerns. I do indeed,” school board member Eleanor Goettee said.

Goettee represents the affected neighborhood on the school board.

“We’ve got to use capacity where we have it,” she said.

Athens Drive is under its capacity, while Apex High is over its capacity, Goettee said. 

However, families say mobile classrooms are opening at Apex, creating more than 380 seats. They also say data show enrollment will decline in their neighborhood by 6 percent, annually.

“We’re just trying to do everything we can to influence the school board to understand that this is a bad decision,” Green said.

Administrators said they revised the plan after hearing from the public at five meetings attended by 1,800 people and after receiving more than 4,000 comments online.

School officials said the plan was developed primarily to account for projected growth and the planned openings of 10 new schools. The district also needs to make room for low-income students who are often bused to meet economic-diversity goals for each school.

62 Comments

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  • keya84112 Jan 6, 2009

    Why is it that they can take kids out of the projects(walnut Terrace) and transfer them half across the city like Davis Drive and West Cary and no meetings are held, No changes are made for the inconvinced parents who don't have transportation to get from Raleigh to Cary. Now when Families who can afford it have kids that are transferred 10 15 miles away they can modify plans and make changes. It seems pretty double sided

  • bs101fly Jan 6, 2009

    look out, parents care SO much that's why only 60 posted comments here, minus my 6 and that means very few of you care and therefore once again this story gets kicked and so do you parents!

  • bs101fly Jan 6, 2009

    Why can't Wake follow suit?"

    because most parents do as they're told and are forced into year round or are forced into travelling multiple miles each way or probably the bulk of them are just too dumb to do anything different.

    you know, the same ones who vote for and pass school bonds because it makes them feel like they are participating in their child's education.
    when in fact, they are empowering the ignorant school board!

    the dumb leading the dumb, the wake county way!

  • msnfnp Jan 6, 2009

    We have chosen to send our daughter to private school because of the continual redistricting that goes on in Wake County annually. If more parents would opt out of the public schools, maybe the state will take over from the county. Didn't Charlotte schools stop the busing farce a few years ago? Why can't Wake follow suit?

  • bs101fly Jan 6, 2009

    You want change? Fight for elections at large! If you can't vote for all 9 of them you will NEVER get change!
    You want change? FAIL the next school bond!
    You want change? Move!!!

    Like it or not only a handful of you will get what YOU want, the rest will get the continued boot by the school board and that WILL ALWAYS be the way for Wake County!
    Always!

    Pay more taxes if you don't want it the genius says??? HA! I think we pay plenty! Why don't you cover that bill for us genius!

  • down by the pond Jan 6, 2009

    Parents you are wasting your time,,,, how many times have i commented on these things about reassignment,,,,you just don 't get it ,,, the school board is not interested in your community and whether kids go to school together ,, they are not interested in the emotional aspects of kids making friends, keeping relationships that are meaningful with faculty,,, so if these things are important to you and if you want a community school, if you want your 9th grader and 12th grader to go to the same high school, if you want a community that knows where your kids go after school ,,, MOVE OUT OF WAKE COUNTY LIKE WE DID ,,,,I cannot begin to tell you how happy we are ,,, and folks you get laughed at by the folks in ny county ,, well we feel sorry for you ,, bless your hearts, they just don't get that they cannot win this,,,,,and i stil drive to wake county and work,,,, see you don't have to go far to get what you want ,,,,,,

  • solly93 Jan 6, 2009

    "If you want less reassignments (less efficiency), pay more taxes. You can't have it both ways.
    pat75"
    How is busing kids 20 miles a day away from the schools near them to other schools in the name of diversity the more efficient system? Just curious.

  • dws Jan 6, 2009

    "Time for Apex, Cary, Holly Springs, Fuquay et al, to break away from Wake county and form their own county! Get away from Raleigh! It will do you all better in the long run!"
    NCPictures

    the time is coming

  • TheBullCity Jan 6, 2009

    If you want less reassignments (less efficiency), pay more taxes. You can't have it both ways.

  • Wheelman Jan 6, 2009

    None of this is going to change until parents get back control of their children's education. That won't happen until the legislature passes a voucher program. That won't happen until there is a big enough voter push for it to make lawmakers more afraid of voters than they are of the education lobby. With vouchers parents would be able to control where the money for their child's education goes. When you control that, you then can see to it that your child gets the education they need, not the one the education bureaucrats say they will get. It's a waste of time to talk to the school board. Organize and talk to the legislature. Make them fear you as voters!

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