Wake County Schools

WCPSS school board member says parent concerns taken into consideration in reassignment plan

Posted October 30, 2018 5:49 p.m. EDT
Updated October 30, 2018 10:30 p.m. EDT

— The discussion about Wake County school reassignment is ongoing but, even though the deadline for a final decision is near, parents are not letting up.

Wake County school board Chairwoman Monika Johnson-Hostler said school board members have been taking parent concerns into account when drafting the reassignment plan.

Public comments will not be allowed at a Tuesday night workshop regarding the plan, but Johnson-Hostler said there have been many face-to-face conversations with parents, and she has a clear understanding of their concerns.

“We’re going to continue to take things into consideration, but the good news is all of us have probably met with each of these communities individually over the last two months, and that’s been a lot of personal contact, and I think the families being impacted know that,” she said.

With the student population continuing to grow, the district will opening the following four schools for the 2019-2020 school year:

Southeast Raleigh Elementary School, Parkside Elementary School, Alston Ridge Middle School and Green Level High School.

Sarah Deeb remembers how she felt after seeing the first draft of the 2019-2020 school reassignment proposal.

"The thought of just finally getting my kids happy and settled in a school to then have to literally uproot them or have two different kids at two different middle schools just felt really daunting," she said.

Deeb is one of countless parents who have attended school board meetings and voiced their opinions since the first draft of the reassignment plan was released several weeks ago.

Prior to Tuesday night's meeting, parents said they were frustrated with the plan for Parkside Elementary, which is expected to operate as a year-round calendar school. Parents said they were expecting the school to operate on a traditional calendar like the school from which their children will be moved.

The proposal gives students a traditional elementary option in Raleigh, but many parents are frustrated that alternate school is 23 miles away.

"We already bus our kids quite far for middle school, and so we know how that works," said Anne Robotti, a concerned parent. "The disruption to family life, the disruption to our jobs."

Deeb, and many other parents, were pleased to learn Tuesday that their fight was successful and their children will not be reassigned from Davis Drive Middle to East Cary Middle.

"It might be us this time, it will be somebody else next time and we all need to stand unified and support each other," she said.

Public comment on the final draft of the reassignment proposal will be allowed at a Nov. 7 meeting, and a final vote on the plan is expected Nov. 20.