Local News

Apex Parents Unhappy About Reassignment Plans

Posted January 6, 2006 5:22 a.m. EST

— Just saying the words "school reassignment" gets many parents aggravated. Now, an entire town is plunging into the debate in Wake County.

At the Apex Town Hall on Thursday night, the mayor hosted a public forum on school reassignment. It's a strong action for a town to go this far to address what is really a school district issue. But residents say their concerns go beyond inconvenience.

Close to 200 people packed the chambers to talk about school reassignment. This time, the issue was brought up not by the school board, but by the town government.

"Even though we don't have a direct jurisdiction, we are the people's advocate," said Apex Mayor Keith Weatherly. "And I feel that's what we're doing with this forum, being their advocate for change."

"I like to see Apex behind it," said parent Cherie Liles. "We feel like Apex is our home. This is where we eat and work Our biggest concern here is that it's splitting our family."

The message of the meeting: if you are a parent who's perturbed about reassignment, then it's time to get organized. Parents filled out surveys that included a priority list for the new superintendent, and they voiced a variety of concerns -- from how they say reassignment sends their children far from home to how it could potentially put their children in danger during an emergency.

"In the case of an emergency, you could possibly have three children in three locations," said parent Teresa Holland.

Wake County Schools administrators say reassignment is necessary to accommodate growth and, some would say, achieve diversity.