Wake school board considers student reassignment
Posted January 25, 2011 6:32 p.m. EST
Updated January 28, 2011 5:16 p.m. EST
Raleigh, N.C. — The Wake County Board of Education on Tuesday began the process of deciding how to assign thousands of students for the 2011-12 school year.
Board members heard nearly 70 recommendations from school system staff, including more than a dozen suggestions on how to fill Walnut Creek Elementary School in southeast Raleigh when the school opens on a traditional school calendar in the fall.
Students from several schools, including East Garner Elementary School and Farmington Woods Elementary School, would be reassigned to Walnut Creek Elementary.
The board also moved to drop several hundred students – about 100 from Daniels Middle School – from the reassignment plan, and several board members also made a handful of additional recommendations that would first have to go before a public hearing before they could be approved.
Board member John Tedesco said Tuesday that he wants to move 76 students in his own neighborhood from Creech Road Elementary School, a high-poverty school in Garner, to Aversboro Elementary School.
Tedesco said the move would allow for smaller class sizes and extended learning at Creech Road Elementary, one of four Wake schools selected for a pilot program that’s being funded by federal Race to the Top dollars.
But the recommendation drew ire from board critics who oppose the board majority’s decision to move away from busing students for diversity purposes to a community-based schools model. They say Tedesco’s recommendation will only make Creech Road Elementary poorer.
Tuesday’s discussion comes after a series of public hearings in which hundreds of people voiced their input on the reassignment plan.
According to the figures released Jan. 5 by the Wake County Public School System’s growth and planning department, the proposed changes could affect the placement of 4,703 students – 2,625 elementary, 1,103 middle and 975 high school students.
Tuesday’s work session dropped hundreds of those students, but it wasn’t immediately clear Tuesday evening how many.