Parents anxious as WCPSS moves forward on enrollment changes

CARY, North Carolina (WTVD) -- Wake County has a good problem, but it's a problem nonetheless: more families means more students enrolled in already crowded schools.

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In light of the anticipated growth, Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) is moving forward with an ambitious plan to minimize overcrowding by filling brand new schools with students attending other schools, plus realigning certain base schools to evenly spread the student populations. The district is also working to meet new state standards governing class sizes in kindergarten through third grade.

"We try to answer as much feedback as we can and make changes where possible," Glenn Carrozzo, WCPSS Senior Director of Student Assignment, explained to ABC11. "But we do have direction from the board to accomplish certain goals."

According to administrators, WCPSS has more than 160,000 students and projects to add nearly 23,000 additional students by the 2024-25 school year. Starting next year, two new elementary schools, a new middle school and new high school will open:

  • South Garner High School, 8228 Hebron Church Road, Garner (Opening for 9th and 10th graders)

  • Apex Friendship Middle School, 7701 Humie Olive Road, Apex

  • Bryan Road Elementary School, 8317 Bryan Road, Garner

  • Buckhorn Creek Elementary School, 5651 Honeycutt Road, Holly Springs

Look up your proposed 2018-2019 WCPSS assignment

On Tuesday, board members reviewed the second draft of the 2018-2019 enrollment proposal, which added a series of changes to maps and "grandfather" policies, allowing students entering 5th grade and 8th grade to stay in their own schools - plus their siblings, who have the option of staying for one year.

The proposal states, however, that if a student chooses to stay at their former school the district will not provide transportation.

WCPSS 2018-2019 Enrollment Plan, Draft 2

Administrators list as many as 39 new schools under construction or slated for design and construction through 2026, meaning school assignments will continue to see dramatic change during the next decade.

WCPSS School Construction Schedule

On its website, WCPSS lists four main "pillars" of student assignment: Student Achievement, Stability, Proximity and Operational Efficiency. Parents wishing to share feedback with WCPSS may continue to do so by submitting their thoughts in an online forum.

The Board of Education will meet again on November 7, and members hope to approve a final proposal by December.
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