Parents, students, leaders protest reassignment

January 12, 2008 1:36:38 PM PST
Don't move us! That's the messge from dozens of students and parents who rallied in front of Cary's Town Hall Saturday.

They were protesting Wake County's latest reassignment plan.

Several city officials and a school board member joined the parents at the rally.

While many of the parents are upset because their children are being reassigned, they say the bigger issue is the amount of time those reassigned students are going to be spending on buses.

"The kids they're busing into Davis Drive Elementary are being bussed for like an hour or an hour and 15 minutes," parent Helen Bowman said. "So, they're getting up at 6 o' clock quarter of six in the morning cause they have to make it to school by 7:15."

And those students are falling asleep in class.

Filling the classes of three new schools opening next fall and easing overcrowding is the reason for the reassignment that affects 58 schools in Wake County.

But promoting diversity by moving more low income students is another issue -- something school board member Ron Margioatta disagrees with.

"I don't care what income level someone is -- whether it's lower or higher than ours," Margioatta said. "We should not be giving up seats for a kid to drive an hour maybe an hour-and-a-half on the school bus at the expense of our own neighborhood community."

Margioatta, several Cary Town Council members and Apex's mayor joined the rally to support the parents and students who don't want to be moved.

Meanwhile, they're hoping their message will be heard before the school board adopts a reassignment plan on February 5.

The first of three public hearing on the reassignment plan will be held 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15 at Sanderson High School. Parents are asked to sign up online in advance to speak.


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