Parents oppose curriculum change at Carrboro school

Posted April 19, 2012 10:51 p.m. EDT
Updated April 19, 2012 10:57 p.m. EDT

— A Carrboro elementary school is considering switching its curriculum to a Spanish dual-language magnet program, but some parents and teachers say they oppose such a move because it would destroy the school's neighborhood tradition.

Frank Porter Graham Elementary School parents packed into the Chapel Hill/Carrboro school board meeting Thursday evening to lay out their opposition to the proposal.

For the past three years, the school board has supported expansion of the district's dual-language initiatives, citing increased demand and cross-cultural benefits.

Parents, however, said it would dismantle the school and uproot families.

Parent Rebecca Essinger Bosworth said that the proposals were causing a great deal of stress and anxiety for students and teachers who are preparing for their annual end-of-grade exams.

"These recommendations came at a very vulnerable time," she said.

Parent Jimmy Shwe fears that a magnet program might force families in close proximity to choose a different school.

"We found that (Frank Porter Graham) is very helpful for us. We don't need to drive and we don't need to get on the bus," said parent Jimmy Shwe. "If we have to go to see the teacher, we just walk to the school."

The community around the school has a large population of families from Korea, Burma and China.

A final vote on the curriculum switch is expected in June.