The impact of this plan may be far reaching. The new plan, in its current state, reassigns over 600,000 addresses - every household in the County. Families no longer have the security of a base school assignment, and property owners can no longer sell their homes with the certainty of having a known school associated with their residence.
The Wake County Board of Education has not provided any evidence that research was conducted to assess the viability of such a complex plan or how it will impact the economy.
Top 7 Reasons Why “Choice” Student Assignment Plan Must be Delayed:
(1) This plan could be extremely costly: more busing, and no plan for paying for it.
No analysis has been conducted to predict the additional costs. The WCPSS stated there will be increased costs; but the public has not seen an outline of the associated costs. Undoubtedly, there will be increased busing under this plan as there is no economy of having a group of neighbors all attending the same school.
(2) The plan destroys neighborhoods.
No longer will neighbors have the choice to go to school with neighbors. Living within the walk zone of a school (1.5 miles) will be no guarantee of access to that school if it is full. Citizens without children in the schools also have a lot at stake with this new assignment plan; you may not be aware that every household address in Wake County, yes your house, has been "unassigned." No longer do you know, based on your address, where your child or the child of a subsequent purchaser, will go to school.
3) The plan could lead to a collapse of home values.
All across the country prospective homebuyers make decisions based on the schools their children will attend if they live in a particular neighborhood. That security is no longer guaranteed; this plan deals with growth by making assignments child by child. (as taken from the N&O 12-16-11) "Susan Pullium, a member of Wake’s student assignment task force, said they needed to eliminate base assignments to have more flexibility to deal with growth." Pullium said “There’s no longer base assignments.”
This plan is a haphazard way of dealing with growth in a down economy. Home values could plummet because new buyers will be stuck with whatever schools are leftover in a school system that is quickly running out of vacant seats.
(3) The plan does not give real choice.
There is no choice where there is no capacity. Choice is a sham if there is no way to meaningfully exercise it. Popular schools will be oversubscribed and enrollments capped. The the plan appears to redistribute students evenly across all of the county’s schools, not to give real choice. This plan may mean long bus rides for many children.
(4) A lottery ball decides where your child will go to school.
If you lose the lottery as a kindergartener or want to make a change later on, you will be stuck all the way through high school. The reason that families across the County are upset about ‘feeder patterns’ is that this plan has many unintended consequences. It was rushed through in October before the newly elected school board members were installed and before proper research was conducted. Getting your fourth choice, when your neighbor's child got their fifth choice won’t make “getting to choose” as positive as it sounds now.
(5) This plan shuts out newcomers.
The uncertainty created by this new plan discourages people from moving to Wake County unless they can afford private education. This plan is bad for our economy. Realtors are already reporting that people who had intended to move to Wake County are either choosing a neighboring county or not coming at all. We will be forcing many families to choose homes based on their best “shot” at getting a seat in a preferred school.
(6) The voters rejected the previous Board 5-0 this fall.
The fall election was a referendum on the policies and practices of the last two years. This plan reflects and embodies those failed policies. The citizens recognized that the plans afoot were costly and poorly conceived; that is why those who supported this plan in the election were defeated. We are counting on the new board to fix the plan before pushing it ahead and trying to make expensive fixes later.
(7) THIS PLAN FAILS ON ALL COUNTS.
What most citizens want and expect is to have a school that they and their neighbors are assigned to, a proximate calendar option that they have a chance of getting in to, and fair, reasonable and innovative magnet choices. Massive reassignment, costly un-piloted assignment plans, and more busing were rejected by the electorate this fall. This plan cannot be salvaged with tweaks. It must be delayed and sent back to the drawing board. For those who say we are too far down the road, it is never too late to make a GOOD DECISION!
Forward this petition to anyone and everyone (post it on Facebook, send it to your spouse, forward to your retired neighbors), signatures = say.
In addition to signing this petition, email the Board: Dcmalone2@wcpss.net, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Jmartin4@wcpss.net