Parents protest at Wake Co. School Board meeting

December 20, 2011 7:52:59 PM PST
The new Democratic majority on the Wake County School Board is getting an earful about the new student assignment plan. Many parents came to Tuesday evening's meeting armed with signs and bullhorns and confronted board members.

The parents say this new assignment plan promises neighborhood schools but isn't delivering. About 20 parents and students from Cary's Carpenter Elementary School say the new assignment plan needs some fixing.

Superintendent Tony Tata touts the plan as win for parents, giving them their choice of schools based on where they live. But these parents say their closest school is not an option.

"It's a neighborhood proximity plan. Why weren't we given the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, or sixth closest schools," asked parent Maria Reier. "Why did you assign Carpenter the seventh closest school?"

"It's just a lot more of a commute for us and we've got a great school right next to us," said parent Todd Takalo. "So, we'd like to keep our kids there."

"So you have a whole large group of families with one school where there's clearly a glitch with the feeder pattern for that one school that needs to be fixed," said School Board member John Tedesco.

Tedesco says the new plan is still viable.

"We did a survey when they were going through the test runs with some 40,000 parents," he said."Ninety-five percent of people approved."

"Whatever plan moves forward, there will be some parents that aren't going to be satisfied and that's unfortunate," said School Board Chairman Kevil Hill. "I understand that."

Hill has scheduled a work session for Jan. 3 to tackle the new assignment plan but don't expect any changes. He says it will be a chance for new board members to ask questions.

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