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Wake County school board votes yes on GPS for buses, extending waitlists and full-day standalone CTE high school

Here's a running update on some of the votes from tonight's Wake County school board meeting.

The board voted 7-2 to pay $1.7 million over the next five years to install  GPS units on all the school buses. Only board members Susan Evans and Christine Kushner voted no.

The board unanimously approved extending the waiting lists for the school choice student assignment plan from June 29 to July 18. The board also unanimously voted to make the new career technical and education high school a full-day standalone model.

Over the objections of some board members, the board will go into closed session first to discuss whether to join the litigation against the N.C. Virtual Academy. Board member Debra Goldman was the most vocal critic, arguing they should have the discussion in open session to be transparent.

1338940392 Wake County school board votes yes on GPS for buses, extending waitlists and full-day standalone CTE high school The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Wake County school board approves Middle Creek bell schedule change

The vote to move the start time for Middle Creek Elementary School to 8:30 a.m. for this fall was approved unanimously and with some melodrama.

During public comment, Middle Creek parents supporting the change thanked Superintendent Tony Tata for bringing it forward. Board member Susan Evans said the credit should go to board member Jim Martin for "pleading their case."

Martin thanked Evans but said that Tata and other people had worked hard on  it too.

Debra Goldman nominating Wake County Superintendent Tony Tata for state superintendent of the year

Wake County school board member Debra Goldman announced tonight that she plans to nominate Tony Tata for North Carolina Superintendent of the Year.

The Central Carolina Regional Education Service Alliance is soliciting nominations for regional superintendent of the year with the winner vying for the state recognition. The state award is given annually by the N.C. Association of School Administrators and the N.C. School Boards Association.

Goldman said that Tata, who has been Wake County's superintendent since January 2011, deserves the recognition. Fellow Republican board members Chris Malone and Deborah Prickett joined Goldman after she urged other board members to support the nomination.

Bill McNeal was the last Wake superintendent to win the state title. He went on to become National Superintendent of the Year.

1347246078 Debra Goldman nominating Wake County Superintendent Tony Tata for state superintendent of the year The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Wake County school board to vote on joining lawsuit opposing proposed online charter school

Will the Wake County school board join a group of school systems from across the state in urging that a virtual charter school not be allowed to open this year?

The N.C. School Boards Association has gotten at least 35 school districts to pass resolutions joining in the litigation opposing the new N.C. Virtual Academy. Now the Wake County school board is scheduled to vote on the issue today.

Normally, new charter schools get approval by going to the state Board of Education. But N.C. Learns Inc. instead got preliminary approval from the Cabarrus school board in January to open the proposed K-12 school that could eventually educate more than 6,500 students across the state.

SEE UPDATE AT END OF POST  FOR LINK TO TERRY STOOPS POST

Also, corrected to say that Goldman is not facing a runoff for auditor. Her opponent did not request a runoff.

1339127498 Wake County school board to vote on joining lawsuit opposing proposed online charter school The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Wake County school board committee debates guaranteeing school spots for families who want to return

Should the Wake County school system hold spots at specific schools for families who say they're leaving but intend to return?

If a guarantee can be given, should it be limited only to families citing sabbaticals from universities or professional leave to go on unique job opportunities? Or should there be no guarantee for any family that leaves with Wake saying it will try, space permitting, to put them back at the same school when they return?

Those questions formed the heart of a lengthy discussion at Tuesday's school board policy committee meeting on whether not having base assignments in the new student assignment plan requires development of a family and professional leave policy.

1338392791 Wake County school board committee debates guaranteeing school spots for families who want to return The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Three Wake County school board members asking for revote on Panther Creek High School ninth-grade center site

Three Wake County school board members are requesting a revote on placing  Panther Creek High School's ninth-grade center at the site of the future Alston Ridge Middle School.

Republican board members Deborah Prickett, John Tedesco and Debra Goldman are requesting a discussion and revote on the location of the ninth-grade center at the June 5 meeting. They're citing the concerns raised by Cary Town Councilman Don Frantz about the town having to grant an ordinance amendment to approve the use of the site.

But the board's fourth GOP member, Chris Malone, is asking "isn't it very late to be having this discussion?" He asks what the "value proposition is" to reconsider the item at this late date.

1337791738 Three Wake County school board members asking for revote on Panther Creek High School ninth-grade center site The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Wake County school board members and Superintendent Tony Tata have frank discussion

Jim Huge was mistaken when he said he wasn't trying to make Tuesday's Wake County school board retreat a counseling session.

As noted in today's article, school board members traded heated words with each and with Superintendent Tony Tata. In turn, the superintendent didn't hold back either in his feeling that some board members were trying to undercut staff.

In the end, board members agreed to meet one-one-one with Tata to start things anew. Whether those meetings and the two-hour discussion Tuesday helps remains to be seen.

Wake County school board debates what to do with proposed transparency policy

Does the Wake County school system need a separate school board policy on transparency?

School board member Debra Goldman has been pressing for what she says is a greater need to make the district's website more transparent. School staff has turned her memo into a proposed new school board policy.

The policy has been sent to the school board's policy committee for review. But in the process there was debate both about the need for the policy and changes in the way that committee agendas are now set.

Wake County school board on the level of bus service for preassigned feeder students

What responsibility does the Wake County school system have in providing transportation to preassigned rising sixth- and ninth-graders who don't have bus service this fall?

As noted in today's article, the school board voted to direct staff to, when possible, modify existing bus routes to accommodate students or to offer them a spot at a school on their proximity list that would give them transportation.

But that motion stops short of guaranteeing bus service to their feeder school. And that motion only extends to students who are receiving bus service this year and would lose it this fall, not transfer students who now don't get bus service.

Wake County school board to discuss transportation for feeder students and transparency today

The Wake County school board will deal with a variety of items at today's meeting, including whether to provide transportation to all rising sixth- and ninth-graders going to their feeder schools this fall.

During the work session, staff will give an update on how many of the preassigned students still don't have transportation and what can be done to accommodate them. The vote on the issue, requested by board member Jim Martin, will come at the regular meeting.

In response to board member Debra Goldman's complaints that Martin was being given more consideration than her for today's meeting, the board will also deal with her concerns about board and district transparency.

1351217624 Wake County school board to discuss transportation for feeder students and transparency today The News and Observer Copyright 2011 The News and Observer . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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